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Transantiago: The Fall and Rise of a Radical Public Transport Intervention

Transantiago: The Fall and Rise of a Radical Public Transport Intervention,Juan Carlos Muñoz,Juan de Dios Ortuzar,Antonio Gschwender

Transantiago: The Fall and Rise of a Radical Public Transport Intervention   (Citations: 2)
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The bus system in Santiago de Chile was voted the c ity's worst public service in 2003. It had been completely in private hands since the late seventie s, and full deregulation during the eighties had eventually left the city with the heavy burden of 8 ,000 converted lorries with a bus chassis not reall y fit for public transport, about 3,000 unprofessional op erators, fierce on-the-street competition for passe ngers (as drivers' wages depended on the number of fares sold), no fare integration between services or with the underground, very long and inefficient bus routes, undignified treatment of passengers and a high accident rate. On top of all this a high level of n oise and environmental pollution due to bad mainten ance of petrol engines, and a high rate of accidents due to both careless driving as (less-often) failure o f brakes due to poor maintenance. The Chilean government decided to intervene the entire public transport system, integrating the well- reputed but not heavily used underground (Metro, a public company) and the private buses, based on a structure of trunk and feeder services (purposely d esigned), a modern bus fleet, integrated fares-paid by touchless smart cards and a high-tech centralised c ontrol system. It also included an entirely new ind ustry structure that was franchised through an internatio nal call for tenders, with operating contracts awar ded to ten national and international firms. The new, inte grated public transport system, known as
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