Implementing sustainable mobility
The citizens of Gdansk like to get around the city in their private car causing congestions and air pollution. The city has identified better use of the tram lines as key to making the city accessible during rush hour.
The main objectives of the measure are to:
>> Reduce dependence on the private car;
>> Reduce the number of cars on the roads; and
>> Promote collective transport.
An extension of a tram line to the new residential district of Chelm opened in December 2007 and was the first extension of the city’s tram service in the past 20 years. Chelm is served by a number of bus lines. These are however subject to delays during peak times and have reached the limits of their capacity. The area is characterised by a large number of young people and families with young children. To reach this young audience, Gdansk decided to promote travel on this line through innovative tools such as blogging competitions, YouTube videos and SMS.
A web-based social network will be established to create a community of tram users who will reinforce each other in their transport choice. The network will raise awareness and seek feedback on other sustainable transport measures. The web platform is intended to break new ground in communicating with young people with the aim of retaining them as public transport users, even if they choose to purchase a car.
Moreover, Gdansk will research psychological aspects of mobility choices and develop campaigns targeting different audiences accordingly. Campaign messages, media channels and delivery mechanisms will be pre-tested with the target audience and will subsequently be amended and further developed. Promotional events will offer discounted tickets or free transport days, and the city will make sure to involve the press, local TV and radio stations.
How is the measure progressing
Gdansk has started this measure with a review of online social networks that fed into the design of a site for the promotion of tram travel. During the development of the platform, there have been trials and some small-scale qualitative market research and concept testing. Before implementation, passenger counts were conducted and baseline research looked into attitudes towards the tram service and levels of satisfaction of about 1,200 users. Based on this data, Gdansk is working to improve the tram service. The city moderates a transport forum and promotes the new tram line through a blog, Facebook and Twitter.
The development of the web service is underway and its usage will be monitored. After implementation, surveys will be carried out again to assess any impacts on passenger numbers, user attitudes and user satisfaction. Brand development and design will be followed by the preparation of promotional materials and the set up and maintenance of the social network site.
What are the expected results of the measure
Gdansk expects that these promotional activities will result in an economically viable number of passengers and a modal shift from private to public transport following a positive shift of attitudes towards public transport. By targeting young people in particular, the city hopes that this group will continue to opt for public transport services, even when they own a car.
Contact: Krzysztof Osmialowski