TRANSPORTOWY 2018 / 2018 in Transport
How it was in 2018? The privatized PKS (Regional Transport Companies) are closing down. Another autonomous means of transport are being tested in the world. Price of rights to emit carbon dioxide go up. Many Polish cities exchange their bus, tram and trolleybus fleet. Cities are preparing new routes for trams and trolleybuses and construction of entire II metro line in Warsaw is already a foregone conclusion. Technology is bravely moving into transport and shared vehicles fleets are also growing. Clean transport areas are an idea for fighting with transport smog. Big changes also on market of rolling stock manufacturers. We will talk about this and a few other topics in this episode. Let’s watch! 2018 Summary Regional Bus Transport Fall For many years, in absence of binding regulations for regional transport organization, next private transport companies are closing down and departures are systematically suspended. In 2018 this phenomenon intensified, because were liquidated or the process started in depots of Mobilis group in Ciechanów, Mińsk Mazowiecki, Ostrołęka, Płock and Piotrków Trybunalski; depots of Arriva group in Węgorzewo, Kętrzyn, Bielsk Podlaski, Sędziszów Małopolski, Prudnik and Kędzierzyn-Koźle and with PKS companies in Lubliniec and Gniezno. In previous years, length of regional transport lines in Poland decreased on average from 6 to 8% per annum. Meanwhile, we are still waiting for the amendment to law about “public collective transport”, currently the ninth draft of this law is being carried out. It should explain responsibilities and oblige local governments to organize public transport. An interesting phenomenon is development of a network of local lines in Warsaw agglomeration, organized by ZTM (Municipal Transport Authority). Almost 50 lines already operate in the network and main task of lines is service of municipalities near Warsaw. Number of municipalities joining a metropolitan ticket is also growing. New transport means? Established in 2017, Hyperloop speed record of 386 km/h was broken last year by only 21%. New record is 467 km/h. It is still just over 1/3 of assumed maximum speed for this mode of transport, which was to be 1200 km/h. Idea of Elon Musk transport moving in tubes also evolved into underground travels by cars under cities. Motorways tunnels were supposed to provide a fast passage between selected points of city. A 3-kilometers-long test section has been presented, but gigantic disadvantage of system shown is infrastructure at ends of the section – lifts. Travel by them takes valuable seconds and this element is a significant limitation of system’s capacity. Highway tunnels were supposed to solve problem of limited capacity of street networks in cities, while in the meantime they generate new capacity problems. In turn, Volocopter presented idea of creating a system of light, aerial taxis. Coming back to the ground, however, further tests of autonomous vehicles are being conducted. Siemens has equipped with sensors a tram in Potsdam and abroad also autonomous minibuses and buses are appearing in street traffic. Electricity price increase In face of development of tram transport and above all electric buses, all of us have been frozen by announcements of Polish energy suppliers about major increase in its price. In tenders for providing energy announced by tram companies there were offers with price increase of up to 60%. Increase results from a four-times increase in prices of EU carbon dioxide emission rights to the atmosphere and more expensive coal imported to Poland from Russia. Such a drastic change could shake Polish economy and therefore government is working on a recovery plan. It consists lowering excise tax on electricity and introducing compensations in 2019. What is waiting for us, however, in 2020? No one knows it. This is certainly a good time to think about energy-saving solutions in transport. Bus replace Effects of new financing perspective of EU funds are now most visible in bus fleets of Polish cities. Solaris – main supplier of city buses to Polish cities had their hands full, a lot of orders were also collected by in recent years less active producers, such as MAN, Volvo or Scania. Toruń or Tarnów replaced 1/3 of the fleet with their orders. For Toruń it was a significant year, because fleet of medium-floor-level Jelcz buses running around the city was decimated and today several buses of this brand are running on a daily basis. A milestone in form of 100% fleet of low-floor buses in 2018 reached Lublin. Huge orders of new rolling stock is behind Krakow – 161 buses have been introduced to traffic. All currently operating buses in this city meet at least Euro 5 combustion standard. Electric buses growth With replacement of rolling stock, there is ongoing electric revolution in bus transport. In 2018, number of electrobuses in hands of operators doubled. Supplies of 47 Ursus for MZK in Zielona Góra are close to finishing – it was largest order in implementation, 10 new electrobuses also appeared in Warsaw and Szczecinek. Operators have launched another large tenders – Warsaw for 130 buses, Poznań for 21. For new 36 battery trolleybuses, including articulated ones, is waiting city of Gdynia and first ones were delivered in 2018. A bad reception included project of implementing electrobuses in Rzeszów, where 10 vehicles were delivered, but they have been in the depot for several months due to unready infrastructure in the city area. Unfortunately, we had first fire of an electric bus – Ursus of Miejskie Zakłady Autobusowe in Warsaw – caught on fire on November 20th at around 5 am on Woronicza bus depot. Meanwhile, National Center for Research and Development has announced tender for development of a Polish electric bus. Three consortia started: Silesian University of Technology, Ursus Bus and Autosan. All were admitted to the research and development phase. We are also waiting for debut of a new manufacturer on Polish electric bus market – Rafako company from Racibórz, operating in energy sector. On European market of standard electric buses, MAN and Mercedes made their debuts. The latter has already started serial production and MAN has announced its launch by 2020. New plants in Europe were opened by Chinese producers – interestingly both BYD and CRRC in cooperation with Ikarus, located them in Hungary. There is more and more ideas for electrobuses – Russians suggest placing a battery in a trailer pulled by a bus. Flixbus is testing a BYD electric bus in Germany on route between Frankfurt and Mannheim. More CNG and hybrid drives Skeptical about electric buses, Tarnów opted for gas buses, which introduced 21 to traffic. Economics of vehicles powered by ecological CNG or LNG drive against diesel vehicles were to improve after government introducing a zero excise tax on these fuels last year – however, price did not decrease in the entire 2018, but even increased by PLN 0.30 to over PLN 3.70. Tender for 43 new CNG buses was run in Tychy, new Scania buses entered also network in Warsaw and MZA Warsaw (Municipal Bus Company) ordered 110 MAN CNG buses. Popular in last year were also hybrid drives, on which decided several Polish cities. New trams New trams in past year appeared in Wrocław, Szczecin, Łódź, Bydgoszcz and Poznań. Most interesting among new vehicles is Poznań’s Moderus Gamma tram, first serial vehicle of this model from among 50 trams contracted by MPK. Unusual individual wagons will appear in Elbląg and network of Silesian Trams – carriers signed contracts with Modertrans. Solaris together with Stadler presented a tram project for Krakow. Grudziądz pushes its purchases of new rolling stock in time and Poznań thinks about purchasing 45-meters-long trams while testing a tri-set of Konstal 105Na wagons on its network. Olsztyn awaits production of Turkish Durmazlar Panorama trams. Also this year, largest tramway order in Poland for Warsaw Trams was not resolved. Closest to singing the contract for a maximum of 213 trams today is Korean Hyundai. New tram and trolleybus routes While tenders for new vehicles were keeping up with planned budgets (more or less), we had such a much more difficult situation on construction market. In tender for construction of second north-south route in Olsztyn, cheapest offer by 60% exceeded the budget. City canceled procedure, reduced route design and waits for first order hill to pass through in construction business. Problems were also in tenders for reconstruction of Wolności Square in Łódź or construction of tram route to Nowy Dwór in Wrocław. Wrocław contract was even divided into 22 parts, but this also did not help in finding contractors. Contractor, however, found Poznań to build a tram route to Naramowice. Extension of trolleybus network is carried out also in Tychy and Lublin. Krakow has increased use of existing tram network, maximizing frequencies of departures. Now in center the capacity can only be increased by construction of new underground routes. Warsaw prepares project documentation for development of tram network in three directions: to Winnica, Gocław and from West Station to Wilanów. 2018 did not provide an answer to question about further fate of suburban trams network in Łódź. Due to exceeded budget, even the renovation of route to Pabianice was questionable. In present circumstances, none of other Polish cities did not think about construction of a new tram network. Warsaw expand II metro line 2018 is year of expansion of second metro line in Warsaw. Work is proceeding successfully and in autumn 2019 we are expecting opening of section to Targówek along with three stations. At same time, tender procedures were carried out in 2018 and contractor for all remaining sections of second metro line and Mory technical station was selected. How much metro is needed in Warsaw is best shown around current terminal station of II metro line – Rondo Daszyńskiego. Every piece of land around station is currently built with offices and a bit further – with flats. Already today problems are caused by connector of both Warsaw metro lines, which is crowded during peak hours. And with development of second line there will be even more passengers transferring there! Subject of local government elections in Warsaw was dominated by conception of construction next: 3, 4, 5 and even 6 metro lines. Time for a brief overview of news from the country. Jaworzno in the summer introduced a revolutionary ticket fare with an annual ticket for PLN 180. A public transport passenger can travel all over the network of PKM Jaworzno per day for 0.50 PLN. New public transport appeared, among others, in Lower Silesia in municipalities of Środa Śląska and Strzelin and in Greater Poland – in Pobiedziska, Rawicz and Kostrzyn Wielkopolski. New transport networks mostly operate on basis of buses with alternative drives – CNG, hybrid or electric. 2018 was last year of operation of Communal Communications Union in the Upper Silesian Industrial District (KZK GOP). The changes are related to adoption of Upper Silesian-Zagłębie Metropolis (GZM), in which Metropolitan Transport Authority (ZTM) was established. In addition to KZK GOP, the Municipal Transport Board (MZK) in Tychy and Intermunicipal Union of Passenger Transport (MZKP) in Tarnowskie Góry were also incorporated into ZTM. New Management Board is to harmonize the tariffs in its area of operation and better shape network of connections. As part of GZM, express bus connections with developing Silesian Pyrzowice Airport have already been launched. We forget about brand of PolskiBus and 2018 was the year of finding in new reality of Flixbus. We have 54 lines, more coach brands, more leg room between rows of seats, but also resignation from obligatory booking of specific seats and more expensive tickets. Polonus national ticket platform was ought to throw his gloves on the Flixbus, but there was also no special offer for passengers on this side. A breakthrough moment on Polish railroad was entering a private railway operator on Kraków – Praga connection. Two courses take place on weekends and the journey takes about 6.5 hours. This precedent does not announce dynamic development of private connections on Polish railways – with current trend of promoting national carriers, this is not the expected development of events. Ahead of us is further fate of material about ferry transport in Świnoujście. Until quite a long time since the opening of offers, contract was finally signed with contractor of car tunnel under Świna. Government has published Local and Regional Railway Infrastructure Supplement Program, containing 20 projects. Railway+ is to enable railway network to be expanded with connections of town with population of over 10,000 people without access to the passenger rail, with voivodship cities. Connection to railway network would be obtained, among others by 90-thousandth Jastrzębie Zdrój, 30-thousand Turek or 20-thousand Myślenice. We are still discussing Central Communication Port, while air traffic in Poland is growing rapidly. Chopin Airport in 2018 served almost 18 million passengers, which gave a 13% increase compared to previous year. Polish airports served 46 million passengers throughout the country. Meanwhile, CPK is to be able to serve 45 million passengers annually at the very beginning. However, assuming a further increase in traffic in country year on year by 10%; only airports in Warsaw agglomeration could reach this ceiling in 2026. Meanwhile, first plane from CPK would fly away at the end of 2027. Information and telecommunications systems are today an important binder of infrastructure, rolling stock and human resources. 2018 brought further development, cities are building new passenger information systems (eg. Częstochowa or Piła) or are expanding existing ones (SDIP in GOP). Ticket systems based on a payment card were launched in Bydgoszcz and Wrocław. IT solutions are also extending cities with ITS – eg. Olsztyn. Białystok, Opole, Warsaw and Kielce – these cities focused on densification of ticket distribution network thanks to vehicle ticket machines. In 2018, EU RODO Regulation came into force, and as a result in vehicles of many transport operators, appeared information about processing of passenger data in form of their image registered on monitoring. Solution, which is to limit time of searching for free parking spaces and, as a result, crowding of central city areas as a result of this search, may be applications that aggregate occupancy of places and indicating areas with free parking spaces for drivers. Shared vehicles explosion! Past year was a further dynamic development of vehicle sharing services. In 7 largest Polish agglomerations there are currently over 18,000 of such vehicles, of which 2/3 are bicycles, cars are 4,000, and scooters 1100. Novelty of last year were electric little Lime scooters for renting, which are estimated to be already over 1,200 in Poland. Also larger bicycle metropolitan systems are to be created, such as Łódź bicycle or Tricity Mevo. In Panek’s carsharing, the iconic Polish Polonez appeared, operator also started an experiment with electric cars. Carsharing services are developing so well in commercial version that Warsaw has given up running its preferred urban service tender. Clean Transport Zones Way to fight traffic smog could be clean transport zones, adopted in 2018 by the parliament. Zones aim to reduce emission of traffic pollution and car traffic in areas heavily used by pedestrians. We already have first zone of this type! From 5 January 2019, regulations are valid on a dozen or so streets in Krakow’s Kazimierz. To move inside the zone are allowed electric vehicles, hydrogen, natural gas cars and residents without restrictions, while entrepreneurs and taxi drivers have unlimited entry until 2025. However, there was no option to entry by other vehicles, even by paying a fee, which also allowed new regulations. Experiment in Krakow will be first test site and experience for other cities considering further restrictions on vehicle traffic in inner-city areas. Major changes on vehicle producers market Very big changes on Polish vehicle manufacturers market. Autosan, in absence of success in contracts for army, were ought to be transferred from Polish Armaments Group to Polish Energy Group – and priority was to prepare production of electric buses – but the transfer did not finally take place. PESA, after a difficult period between two prospects of financing EU projects, is trying to return to right production track under wings of Polish Development Fund. Ursus Bus, after many problems with production of won orders for electric buses, but still with large prospects for production development – has been put up for sale. However, biggest shock in the industry was caused by decision of Olszewscy family to sell shares in Solaris. Majority of shares was taken over by Spanish CAF group, known so far for production of rail vehicles. New owners ensure that Solaris brand will be maintained and further developed. These decisions were largely influenced by fact that Solaris gained a significant position in European electric bus market in recent years. In one sentence, it is impossible to summarize last year’s transport events, but it was definitely a good year of development and a period of preparation for subsequent investments. Shadow on it, however, puts a progressive fall of regional bus transport, galloping prices in construction tenders and shaken stability electricity price for subsequent years. So what is ahead of us in 2019? Above all, it will be a continuation of rolling stock exchange and further tenders will be launched for construction of new tram lines in several cities. Warsaw metro trains will take us to next 3 stations, finishing of next 3 will last and construction of the next ones will start. We are even more entangled in network of information systems supporting public transport. In spring, there is also announced a flood of new little scooters sharing systems. The fight against smog continues, but I do not expect significant progress over next year. However, this year should bring stabilization on market of rolling stock manufacturers, who do not complain about lack of orders. I would also like to thank all the people who sent photos and video shots for this episode! Meanwhile, thanks for your attention and see you next time. Bye!