Armando Gutiérrez on Seville Metropolitan area Transport Authority : “Nine key steps over ten years”.
The whole concept dates back to
the 80’ when the regional
government of Andalusia started
the first talks about a Transport
Authority. But it really started in
2001 when the necessary agreements
especially between the
government of the city of Seville
for the first time enlarged to the
metropolitan area and the regional
government Junta de Andalucia
decided to create the Consorcio de Transporte (transport authority)
along with the twenty one neighbouring municipalities and
impulsed a technical and administrative cooperation with the
province of Seville.
The public transport governance has been largely inspired by
the success of transport authorities of other Spanish as well as
European metropolitan areas. The key factor has been a spirit of
cooperation and consultation, still very much alive, so that decision
are always taken democratically and based on technical grounds.
Only two years after was a law passed by the Parliament of
Andalusia that enshrined the organisation of the Consorcio into
the Law on Urban and Metropolitan Passenger Transport. A
way of confirming that social reality is often ahead of legislation.
Nine years after, the example has been followed by the nine
biggest metropolitan areas of the Andalusia region.
The past ten years have seen a hard work done to implement
a urban public transport system almost from the beginning. The
first task of the road map was to integrate all bus routes from
the neighbouring places into a network of metropolitan buses.
The aim was to get a common visual brand and to renew the
ageing fleet with a concern for being environmentally friendly
in choosing biodiesel energy power. Naturally vehicles specially
adapted to passengers with disability were included as well
from the start. Following this, the next task was to list, check
and improve every single bus stop. The most crowded being
equipped with bus shelters.
The next important step (third one) was to achieve tariff integration
to avoid multiple tickets with a distance-base price with a view
to encourage loyalty among passengers regular users of public
The restructuration of the bus routes network has been the
fourth key element to work on. The objective was to structure
into bus corridors some routes easily recognizable and launch
the first links between municipalities by means of direct routes
from suburb to suburb avoiding the radial scheme that brings
back all routes to the centre of the main city. The circular line
M-101 known as “circular del Aljarafe” is a good example.
The fifth step has seen the upgrading to modern technology
namely the contactless card of the ticketing system while integrating
all modes of transport and thus making easy for the passenger
the transfer from one mode to another inside the network.
The sixth step was to enlarge the scope of the Consorcio from 22
to 45 municipalities1 and increase the transport services accordingly.
Following and consistent with the previous six steps, implementing
a solid system of information to the traveller was the seventh step
to be taken. Such tools as the web page, the regular newsletter
“Billete Unico”, the special call number for customer care, the
dedicated spots for customer attendance at the bus terminal of
Plaza de Armas or the metro station Puerta Jerez all amounted
to a successful information service thanks to the dedicated staff.
Promoting soft modes was the next (eighth) step, and in particular
the use of the bicycle as a complementary means to public
transport through the the successful special scheme “Bus – Bici”.
The ninth and last step but not the least important was
the implementation of the hole Quality Process scheme to
ensure the activity of the transport authority Consorcio is fully
accountable and transparent.
Armando Gutiérrez CEO of Consorcio de Transportes
Metropolitano del Aréa de Sevilla
For more: firstname.lastname@example.org
Updated : February 10, 2012