neděle 19. července 2009

Bogota - transportation system TRANSMILENIO

Bogota has an integrated public transportation system Transmilenio (, which forms a backbone of transportation there.

It was launched around the turn of the milenium and its specific is that it uses combination of buses as vehicles with secluded corridors and metro-like stations and varied station coverage by different lines on the same route.

The whole system is divided into various sections which have different code letter (A,B,C,D,E,F,G,H,J) and a different color. This makes orientation easier. The stations in a particular section have the ascribed color, where as buses announce their destination by combination of letter and number. The letter informs passanger as to the destination sector of the vehicle, where as the number denotes the station coverage. The bus maz be for instance D70.

---- What is intriquing about this is that bus changes its code at the terminal. Sometimes they just turn around and go back to a different sector, meanwhile changing the code letter (he D70 maz become J70 etc.). Good thing is that usually the number describing station coverage remains the same and its onlz the terminal destination denotation that changes.----

The varied station coverage is one of the intriquing aspects of the system. There are many different services going to one destination, and therefor many different numbers followind one letter in the bus identification. The advantage of this is that besides one service, that stops on every station of the route, there are other "express" services that stop only at some stations, thus arriving in much shorter time. There are timetables and served station diagrams at all stations so that passenger can choose the appropriate service.

---Sometimes the best results are achieved by going with express service first and than transfering to a regular service near to our destination. But how is this possible without paying extra? Well the answer is simple. As I have said, the system makes use of a metro-like stations. That means, that passengers enter throughh a checkpoint to an enclosed, secluded and elevated platform. This platform is raised some 70 cm above the ground, and is divided from the bus corridor by a glass wall with sliding doors that only open when the bus arrives at the station. (Buses therefor do not have stairs but we enter directly at the floor level which makes them accessible for disabled people, too. They also have "emergency" exits with stairs.) We onlz paz when passing the checkpoint to enter the system... as long as we keep on its premises (i.e. onboard of the buses or within the platforms) we can use the service without paying again. Onlz after we leave the system we then have to pay again upon re-entry. ----

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