Buses in Prague
The bus service in Prague is provided by several transport operators, chiefly by Dopravní podnik hlavního města Prahy, a.s. (Prague Public Transit Co. Inc.). The base system of metropolitan and suburban transport is Pražská integrovaná doprava (Prague Integrated Transport) organized by Prague municipal organization ROPID but several urban and suburban lines don't belong to it. PID system includes also metro and tram lines, Vltava ferries, a funicular and partly railway transport.
The first buses in Prague were experimentally operated in 1908 in the Malá Strana district, but due to unreliable technology at the time it was declared a failure after 20 months. Regular service was started on 20 June 1925 and is in operation continuously since.
In 1990s and 2000s, metropolitan system was integrated and expanded with suburban transport as Pražská integrovaná doprava (PID, Prague Integrated Transport). Some directions (Kladno) remain not integrated in this system. The buses are fulfilling many different roles in the Prague's public transport. Many lines serve as connections between the metro and housing quarters. There are also plans to gradually introduce trunk services, similar to bus rapid transit systems in Latin America.
The buses are fulfilling many different roles in the Prague's public transport and they were several times changed during years. Many lines serve as connections from housing areas to the metro, railway or tram stations, many lines serves as local net or tangential connection (metro and tram lines are prevalently diagonal). Main terminals of metropolitan buses are near metro stations: Černý Most, Zličín, Háje, Letňany, Nové Butovice, Želivského, Českomoravská, Kačerov, Budějovická, Depo Hostivař, Dejvická, Na Knížecí (Anděl), Skalka, Palmovka, Nádraží Holešovice, Florenc etc. Suburban and long-distance buses use some of them. The main stations of long-distance buses are ÚAN Florenc, Černý Most and Zličín.
Since 2008, ROPID is implementing a plan to differentiate rachial lines with small intervals and articulated buses. Some telematic systems are widely implemented (GPS monitoring, traffic signal preference).
Bus lines belonging to the PID system are numbered within number series:
- 100-297: daytime metropolitan lines (line 100 is for technical reasons internally marked as 1OO and numbered as 299)
- 301-398: daytime suburban lines
- 401-495: daytime regional (not going into the city proper) lines
- 501-516: nighttime metropolitan lines
- 551-571: school lines
- 601-610: nighttime suburban lines
- special bus lines for handicaped: marked with wheelchair symbol with numbers 1, 2, 3 (also H1, H2, formerly H3, internally numbered as 799 (H1), 798 (H3) and 797 (H2).
- letter X with number of tram line (X-9, X22) or metro line letter (X-A, XC) are used for occasional substitute lines. Internally numbered in 800 serie (809, 822...). Some substitute lines are numbered in 700 serie.
- AE: Airport Express (internally 790)
- 700 serie: some temporary local lines with non-standard financing (financed not by city but by city districts etc.)
Outside PID system:
- 700 serie: special lines (transport to trade fairs, football matches etc.)
- shopping lines: marked in different ways (logos, letters, shop names etc. – IKEA, IKEA2, GLOBUS, OCL, T, E, S, C, O, BBC, OUTLET), all free of charge
- ZOO line with symbolic fare
- suburban lines of SID (Středočeská integrovaná doprava, Central Bohemian Integrated Transport) organized by Central Bohemian Region. Several attempts to integrate PID and SID are unsuccessful yet. Marked with combinations of one letter and two digits, e. g. D97.
- other lines outside integrated systems, mostly intercity and long-distance public lines, with small importance to city transport
- non-public (special) lines (for workers, handicapped etc.)
- Dopravní podnik hl. m. Prahy a. s. (DPP), most of metropolitan PID lines and several tens of suburban PID lines. DPP has 5 big bus depots in Prague: Klíčov (Prosek), Vršovice (Michle), Kačerov (Michle), Hostivař (Malešice), Řepy (Řepy)
- Veolia Transport Praha, s. r. o.: ca 9 metropolitan PID lines and 45 suburban PID lines, some SID lines and non-integrated lines. The main bus depot is in Vršovice.
- ČSAD Střední Čechy, a. s.: 31 suburban PID lines
- ČSAD POLKOST, spol. s r. o.: metropolitan PID line No. 232 and 11 suburban PID lines
- ČSAD MHD Kladno, a. s.: 9 suburban PID lines and several suburban SID lines
- Martin Uher, spol. s r. o.: 6 suburban PID lines
- Bosák bus, spol. s. r. o. (Arriva Group): 5 suburban PID lines
- STENBUS s. r. o.: metropolitan lines 269, 263, 206, 562, 564
- ABOUT ME s. r. o.: minibus metropolitan lines 295, 296, 297, H2
- Jaroslav Štěpánek: metropolitan PID lines 110 and 557, suburban PID line 302
- PROBO BUS a. s. (NedRailways Group): 5 suburban PID lines
- Okresní autobusová doprava Kolín, s. r. o.: 2 suburban lines to Prague (and 14 regional lines PID in Kolín District)
- Hotliner s. r. o. and Cityliner s. r. o.: some shopping lines outside PID and some occasional tram-substitute lines
- Libor Valenta: several shopping lines of Tesco Letňany (outside PID)
- CEDAZ s. r. o.: shuttle microbuses to the airport, outside PID
- ČSAD Benešov a. s.: shopping line OUTLET Štěrboholy, outside PID
- many other operators of SID system and non-integrated suburban and long-distance lines
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