A new bus route network will be launched in Vantaa on 10 August 2015. The Ring Rail Line set to open in July 2015 and the new bus routes together form the public transport network in the city. The Ring Rail Line will provide a frequently running trunk transport link for Vantaa. Buses will act as feeders to the new Ring Rail line stations. The Executive Board of HSL awarded contracts for the new Vantaa bus routes on 18 October. The services now tendered account for about 12 percent of all HSL services, amounting to EUR 35.4 million a year.
New buses for the new routes
At the beginning of the winter timetable season, 79 new buses will enter into service. In 2016, another 11 new buses will enter into service and five more new buses are scheduled to be introduced in 2019. The low-emission E6 compliant vehicles to be introduced next autumn will substantially reduce local emissions. Eleven of the buses will be energy-efficient light-frame buses with at least one fifth lower CO2 emissions than earlier regular diesel buses.
The new buses are also comfortable and safe to travel in. The buses will be equipped with air conditioning, automatic fire extinguishing system and driving style monitoring system. A safety cabin and camera surveillance will improve drivers' occupational safety.
New bus route network for Vantaa
HSL has been preparing the reorganization of the public transport route network in Vantaa since spring 2011. The aim has been to adjust bus services to the situation in autumn 2015 when the Ring Rail Line train services will be the main public transport link in many areas. As the Ring Rail Line services will increase the cost of train services, bus services need to be reduced correspondingly so as not to significantly increase the overall cost level of public transport.
Primarily, trains will provide crosstown links between Tikkurila and Myyrmäki. Also bus links from Tikkurila and Myyrmäki to the Helsinki-Vantaa airport will be replaced by train. Bus service supply is improved by feeder bus services to the Ring Rail Line stations as well as by increasing the number of services serving new housing and employment areas.
HSL has planned the bus route network in four planning projects for different areas of the city, on the basis of which a route network plan covering the whole of Vantaa has been drawn. The Ring Rail Line train services and the bus route network form a coherent whole both in terms of the organization of services and costs. In summer 2013, HSL invited comments on the draft route network plan for Vantaa from its member municipalities. The route network plan has been modified on the basis of the comments to ensure an effective system of services and to keep the costs at the agreed level.