The existing bus network in North East Helsinki dates back to about 20 years when the Tikkurila city rail line was opened and train services between Helsinki and Tikkurila were increased. However, the current bus network is not the best possible: on some of the routes, passenger numbers are low and it is difficult to provide regular headways.
Two major changes are taking place this year that will significantly affect North East Helsinki. When the Ring Rail Line opens, main line train service increase and trains will run even more frequently also outside peak times to Malmi and Puistola. In addition, a new frequently running trunk bus route 560 (Vuosaari-Myyrmäki) will start running via Malmi station providing a new transfer link to East Helsinki.
In the planning, the goal has been to create a bus network that would provide convenient transport links from North East Helsinki to the city center and would also provide feeder services to train and Metro stations as well as serve journeys within North-East Helsinki. The aim has been to provide regular headways and frequent service on the joint route sections of certain routes.
For example, on the joint route sections of routes 71+71B, 73+74, 79+79B and 561+561B, services will run at the most every 10 minutes on Monday-Friday and on Saturdays and every 15 minutes on Sundays.
Residents involved in the planning
HSL started the planning last autumn. During the course of the work, residents were able to follow the progress of the planning on a blog. In addition, HSL held three residents' meetings to present the plan and get feedback on it.
The first draft of the plan was published just before Christmas 2014.A second draft revised on the basis of a wealth of feedback received on the first version was published on 5 February 2015. Some minor changes were made to the second draft but the feedback received on the second draft was vastly more positive than the comments on the first draft.
HSL received the most feedback on the proposed changes to routes 69 and 72. On the basis of feedback, HSL decided to continue route 69 and make changes to planned new route of bus 72.