Public Transport System
The integrated transport network (VVS) covers the regional administrative districts. VVS is jointly owned by the operators (50%) and public authorities (50%). Its main functions are ticketing revenue and providing passengers with timetables and traffic information.
Public transport within the region is mainly operated by:
- Stuttgarter Straßenbahnen AG (SSB) providing metropolitan light rail services and city buses.
- Deutsche Bahn AG (DB) providing general rail services and suburban railways (S-Bahn)
- 40 regional bus companies operating within the administrative districts
The suburban railway system
1.) Current operation
“S-Bahn,” the commonly used term for the suburban railway system was, established in 1930 in Berlin. The S-Bahn has come to mean fast, comfortable trains with a big capacity that are equipped with an adequate number of doors, allowing commuters fast entry and exit. Requirements for an S-Bahn system are:
- Synchronized timetables
- Rapid succession of trains
- Easy changing of trains
- Integration of Traffic with bus, tram and other railway systems
- In Stuttgart the “S-Bahn-operation” started with the electrification of the line from Ludwigsburg to Esslingen in 1933, suburban railway services began to connect both cities with the center of Stuttgart. The current S-Bahn system was implemented in 1978. Today, the S-Bahn-network is accessible to 90 % of inhabitants within the region. The network consists of 3 lines ending in the city and 3 lines running through it. Operation is provided 7 days a week running from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m with an additional night service at the weekend. There is a rapid succession of trains in the main part of the network (between Hauptbahnhof and Schwabstraße) which means a train every 2.5 minutes during peak hours.
The suburban railway network in the Stuttgart region (source: Verband Region Stuttgart)
Some key figures:
- More than 400,000 passengers per day, 120 Million passengers per year (2015)
- 29,000 train kilometers per day, 10.5 Million train kilometers per year (2015)
- 7 Lines, with an overall line length of 289 kilometers
- The longest line is the S1 with 71.6 kilometers
- 83 Stations, Platform height: 96 cm (preferred), 76 cm (if necessary)
2.) Night time service in the region
In the year 2000, a regional night bus service was introduced on the weekends. The service was so successful that, after just a few years, it had reached its capacity. As a result, it was replaced in 2012 by extending the services of the suburban railway.
Generally, these services operate only on the weekends and the night before a public holiday. Since the end of 2012, three additional trains run to every terminus between about 2 and 4 a.m. End of 2016 this service will be extended to one train per hour and direction during the whole night.
An added benefit is that people living in the region are now able to take the suburban railway to catch the first morning flights on the weekends.
Supply/Demand Data 2014
The VVS covers an area consisting of 3,357 square meters, with 2.6 Million inhabitants. About 455 different lines are under operation with 3,916 stations and stops. Forty different companies operate the network by running 1,699 busses and vehicles, serving 357 million passengers. (source: www.vvs.de).