Study: Water Buses to Solve Traffic Congestion, Speed Commute Time by 33%

| May 23, 2014

Water busesWater buses. Not something most fleet pros are considering.

So ponder this: A new study from the KTH Royal Institute of Technology’s Department of Aeronautical and Vehicle Engineering recently explored the concept — finding that it could be quite an effective solution to traffic congestion, as well as helping to reduce transit times.

Travel time can be reduced up to 33% for many trips, the study found.

The new research — referred to as the Waterway 365 project — explored the possible ways that such water buses could be integrated into Stockholm’s mass transit system and beyond.

Researcher Karl Garme, of the KTH Royal Institute of Technology’s Department of Aeronautical and Vehicle Engineering, notes that while the water buses could help reduce the load on land-based transit, add capacity to a city’s transit system, and (positively) change transport flows, they could also do much more.

With regard to potential applications in other cities, the report notes five basic conditions that have to be taken into account:

  1. The water buses have to be integrated with land infrastructure, physically and through payment systems.
  2. They should run year-round, even if the water freezes in the winter. The researchers point out that heavy steel reinforced hulls add to fuel consumption, but one solution could be that the system gets assistance ice breaking vessels that clear water routes, much as plow trucks keep roads open in the winter.
  3. Boarding and disembarking needs to be fast.
  4. They also should be modular, with different sizes for different needs.
  5. Planning for water buses should be done before the possibilities are ‘built away’. Planning for water traffic has to be integrated into planning for the rest of the system or it won’t be profitable.


Category: General Update

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