Transport in Zagreb

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A train and a tram
Traffic on Marin Držić Avenue approaching rush hour

Transport in Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, relies on a combination of city-managed mass transit and individual transportation. Mass transit is composed of 19 inner-city tram lines and 120 bus routes, both managed entirely by Zagrebački električni tramvaj. Croatian Railways manages the parallel Zagreb Commuter Rail system. The city is served by the Zagreb Airport, which carries more than 2,000,000 passengers per year.

Road transport[edit]

Marin Držić and Slavonska Avenues interchange (so-called Petlja)

Zagreb drivers typically use a wide network of avenues and other arterial streets. Due to the shape of the city, most of the trips done in the city are on the east-west relation, causing high traffic on roads like Vukovar Avenue, Dubrovnik Avenue and Zagrebačka Avenue. The 18-kilometer (11 mi) Slavonska Avenue is the longest and one of the most congested roads in Zagreb, connecting the inner city to the A3 highway in the east.

Zagreb is a regional highway hub with eight highways and expressways radially leading into the city through the Zagreb bypass. Major highways and expressways include A1/A6, leading to Gorski Kotar, the Littoral and Dalmatia; A3 leading west to Rakitje, Samobor, Žumberak and Slovenia and east to Rugvica, Ivanić-Grad, Slavonia and Serbia; A2 leading northwest to Zaprešić, Zabok, Krapina and Central Europe; A4 leading northeast to Varaždin, Čakovec, Hungary and on to Eastern Europe; A11 leading southeast to Velika Gorica, Sisak and Petrinja (still in construction) and D10 leading east to Vrbovec and Križevci.

Similar to other European cities, Zagreb does not feature a regular grid plan. Donji Grad, the Zagreb downtown, mostly built in the 19th century, features a quasi-rectangular street plan, but the rest of the city depends on the form of wide straight avenues intersecting densely built neighborhoods composed of mostly chaotical street systems.

Taxicabs[edit]

The light sign of a Zagreb taxicab

The first taxicab ever in Zagreb started operating on June 11, 1901. It was driven by Tadija Bartolović, a skilled fiaker driver. After a successful test drive where Bartolović drove mayor Adolf Mošinsky through Mesnička Street and Gornji Grad, the first taxicab stand in the city was opened on the Ban Jelačić Square.[1][2]

The association of taxicab drivers Radio Taksi Zagreb, of over than 1,150 taxicabs, was the sole provider of taxi services in the city before 2011, when the first of many competitive services started to run taxicabs in the city.[3]

Mass transit[edit]

Tram

Mass transit in Zagreb is managed by the company Zagrebački električni tramvaj (ZET), part of the Zagreb Holding, a holding managing utilities and other city services. ZET's trams used to span the entire city, but due to only two expansions (the Dubec and Prečko routes) in the last 20 years, trams are today confined to the inner city. However, a bus network supplements the tram and services a large part of the Zagreb metropolitan area even outside the borders of the city proper. Other transport amenities are also available, such as the Sljeme gondola lift (closed for re-construction since 2007) or the Zagreb Funicular.

Tram[edit]

Main article: Trams in Zagreb

The first tram line was opened on September 5, 1891, setting off a vital part of the Zagreb mass transit system. Zagreb today features an extensive tram network with 15 day and 4 night lines running over 117 km (73 mi) of tracks through 255 stations and transporting almost 500,000 passengers per day (almost twice as much as the Los Angeles County Metro Rail). The network covers much of the inner city, but some lines extend to the suburbs, such as line 15 (operating in Podsljeme) or lines 7 and 11 (operating in Sesvete). Although the trams are capable of achieving speeds in excess of 70 km/h (43 mph), the unique fact that the network operates mostly at the curb limits their speed to the speed of surrounding vehicles, causing the trams to travel at speeds of 25–50 km/h (15-31 mph) in the inner city, with considerable slowdowns during the rush hours.

The rolling stock is made up by various trams, including 87 ČKD-Tatra T4 cars (designated as TMK 401 by ZET), 15 TMK 101 cars (obsolete, used only as substitutes), 18 TMK 201, 16 Düwag GT6 (TMK 901), 16 TMK 2100 cars and 140 new, 100% low-floor TMK 2200 cars. TMK 2200 is produced by the Crotram consortium, composed of Končar elektroindustrija, TŽV Gredelj and Đuro Đaković. Another 70 shorter versions will be delivered in the following period.[4]

Commuter rail[edit]

Main article: Zagreb Commuter Rail

With 21 trains, the Zagreb suburban railway mainly covers the eastern and western parts of Zagreb. It mostly operates on the same standard-gauge lines used for Croatian Railways' long-distance trains. The trains normally operate on a 15-minute frequency, but reach only a portion of the city's suburbs.

Metro[edit]

A second light-rail or metro system, the Zagreb Metro, has been planned numerous times. It would complement the tram commuter rail networks, but currently it is not even clear if the system would be a full metro or a light Metro.

The first plans were presented in 2004, under which a light Metro would be built, going at speeds of up to 35 km/h.

It has been stated that the full Metro is not worth building.[5] A full metro costs twice more than the light metro, and can carry up to 70,000 people per hour in a direction. Forecasts predict that by 2020 the maximum load of passengers will be 7,000.

The light metro's capacity would be 24,000, but due to the significantly cheaper cost, it was the preferred choice in January 2007, when the City Authorities announced plan for new Metro System consisting of 4-5 metro lines.[6] Phase 1 of the new metro was going to be 22.7 km long, of, of these 10 km underground. The Metro system will be based on light rail PTN system currently in use in Vancouver, San Francisco or Singapore, but a full metro system is also a possibility.

There would be three lines running west-east, and two running north-south, converging on the city center. All lines were planned to go underground in the city center. Once the Zagreb metro system would be fully completed it would have 25 km of underground and 55 km overground lines. The cost of this entire system is thought to be about 5.5 billion Euro over 20 years. The initial cost would be between 600 million and 1,14 billion Euros.[6]

Still no concrete work has been done, due to lack of funding. Still not clear nor anyhow decided, which of proposed variants will be finally used for traffic relief in Zagreb. Premetro concept[citation needed], Light rail concept (fully excluding expensive tunnel boring) on existing heavy rail corridors which need updating and some newly built, or full scale subway.

At a 2008 conference named "Razvitak Zagreba" (Development of Zagreb), a proposal was presented by prof. dr. Damir Pološki of the Faculty of Civil Engineering, University of Zagreb.[7]

There is even a plan, that the completion of the project will be prolonged until 2030.[8]

In September 2009, a plan for a light rail system was presented at the Croatian Chamber of Civil Engineers (HKIG) meeting by dr. Davorin Kolić, a rail system designer with international experience.[9][10] [11][12]

Water transport[edit]

The river Sava flows through the city, but it is not navigable in Zagreb and the nearest port is located in Sisak. The city has had a history of flooding,[13] and since the last catastrophic flood in 1964, when inundation affected 60 km2 of inner city territory, the city authorities had built a system of levees to protect itself from Sava, together with a discharge canal Sava-Odra, completed in 1971. Since then the city's waterside has been strictly isolated, spanned only by three central bridges between the north of Zagreb and Novi Zagreb in the south. Later, seven more bridges were built in the west and the east, also over the levees.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "O nama". Radio taksi Zagreb (in Croatian). Archived from the original on 2008-06-23. Retrieved 2008-12-19. 
  2. ^ Pećinar, Svjetlana (2001-11-24). "Kad taksi ima rođendan, mame iz Petrove voze se besplatno…". Vjesnik (in Croatian). Retrieved 2008-12-19. 
  3. ^ "Nema više monopola: Taxi Cammeo počeo s radom u Zagrebu!". Jutarnji list (in Croatian). 2011-04-22. Retrieved 2012-02-05. 
  4. ^ "Predstavljen 71. niskopodni tramvaj". ZET (in Croatian). 2007-12-27. Archived from the original on 2007-12-31. Retrieved 2008-01-08. 
  5. ^ "Matoš: Metro je neisplativ" (in Croatian). Javno.hr. 2007-02-10. Retrieved 2010-11-19. 
  6. ^ a b Ivan Pandžić (2007-01-10). "Zagrebački ‘laki metro’ sagradit će se u četiri godine". Poslovni dnevnik (in Croatian). 
  7. ^ "U predviđenih 56 kilometara metroa treba uložiti oko 2,5 milijarde eura". Vjesnik (in Croatian). 2008-02-27. Retrieved 2010-11-19. 
  8. ^ "Metro za Zagreb 2030.". Jutarnji list (in Croatian). 2008-11-29. Retrieved 2010-11-19. 
  9. ^ Davorin Kolić (2009-09-07). "Design Concept and Financing of the Light Rail Zagreb Project" (PDF). Zagreb: Croatian Chamber of Civil Engineers (Hrvatska komora inženjera građevinarstva, HKIG). Retrieved 2010-11-19. 
  10. ^ "Laka željeznica dignula bi vrijednost zemljišta, a njome bi mogli voziti i Končarevi tramvaji". Vjesnik (in Croatian). 2009-09-04. Retrieved 2010-11-19. 
  11. ^ "Kolić: Zagrebu je prijeko potreban metro". Dnevnik.hr (in Croatian). Nova TV. 2009-09-07. Retrieved 2010-11-19. 
  12. ^ "Novac bi se našao, ali nema političke volje za gradnju metroa u Zagrebu". Večernji list (in Croatian). 2009-09-08. Retrieved 2010-11-19. 
  13. ^ History of Sava flooding in Zagreb (Croatian)

External links[edit]