Tbilisi Mayor Kakha Kaladze recently announced the introduction of new 18-meter buses, set to replace the existing 12-meter models on four major routes – N301, N302, N308, and N314. This change, part of a citywide transportation overhaul, aims to enhance passenger capacity and reduce wait times.
Kaladze assured that the city's infrastructure is ready to accommodate these larger vehicles. "Next year, we will see these high-capacity buses navigating through Tbilisi. They've been chosen for specific corridors with heavy passenger flow, determined through comprehensive studies with international experts," he stated.
Reminiscing about the past, Kaladze lamented the loss of trams in the city, attributing it to detrimental actions by certain individuals. "If trams were still operational today, they would significantly alleviate our current transportation challenges," he added.
The mayor also addressed the mixed reactions to the Munich-sourced 18-meter bus displayed earlier in the capital. He emphasized that the city's development initiatives, including transportation improvements, are for the benefit of all residents, regardless of political affiliation. "We are committed to enhancing public transport, expanding recreational spaces, and continuing urban development, without dividing society along party lines," Kaladze commented.
With the implementation of these larger buses on routes N301, N302, N308, and N314 – which collectively account for 55,000 daily trips – the capacity on these routes is expected to increase by 50%. The currently used 12-meter buses will be reallocated to other routes such as N304, N305, N307, and several others, thereby boosting capacity by 40%.
Furthermore, the replacement of 8-meter buses with 12-meter models on routes N387 and N293 will lead to capacity increases of 70% and 155%, respectively. This shift is part of a broader plan to introduce 160 units of 18-meter buses across 10 main transport corridors in Tbilisi within a year.