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Blees > Uncategorized > Marcin Ruciński about the future of public transport.
11 February 2024

Marcin Ruciński about the future of public transport.

What do you think are the biggest challenges for public transport nowadays?
In my opinion, the biggest problem for public transport in its broadest sense currently is its underfunding. The lack of proper measures at every stage of public transport operations results in its competitiveness with private transport. All the time, existing local routes are being closed or the number of courses reduced. Such actions cause the public to stop using public transport. To this must also be added the issues of low wages among, for example, drivers operating public transport vehicles.

Can we talk about the formation of mobility in Polish cities?
Yes, but not in all of them. Convenient transfer points are being built, e.g. from the train to urban transport, and a large number of points are being created for the use of city bikes or public transport. Unfortunately, this does not apply to all cities in Poland; there are still places on the map where the level of transport exclusion is high. There are also various types of tools available to conveniently use public transport, but as I mentioned earlier – these are most often aimed at residents of large agglomerations.

In your opinion, how should urban mobility look?
Ease and convenience of using public transport. The user should be able to travel from point A to point B in a convenient and pleasant way. This applies to every element of the journey:
– planning,
– choice,
– fare,
– convenient transfers,
– optimal journey time,
– comfort of traveling.

Is the law on collective public transport a relic? Isn’t it worth taking a broader view and creating a law on the mobility of citizens?
Every document of a legislative nature becomes obsolete at some point. Society and its needs are changing and so is public transport. Therefore, it is important to continuously monitor changes and needs and to respond to them accordingly.

Is there a space for the development of flexible shared transport in Poland?
Of course there is. There is only one ‘but’, that is, the awareness and attitude towards this type of solution among the public. Not so long ago, hitchhiking was very popular and often used by families or groups of friends. Nowadays, unfortunately, this has changed. This change has certainly been influenced by the increase in various types of dangerous situations, including robberies and thefts. These types of incidents have a huge impact on behavior and concerns on both the driver and the passenger.

What can we do to enhance and promote public transport?
We can propose a better offer in the form of a more extensive network and increased availability of courses and transfers. In addition, a good and transparent fare offer and discounts for group rides or season tickets are also needed.

Cities are obligated to make so-called SUMPs with a 2030 perspective. What do you think will be the biggest changes and novelties for public transport/public mobility?
What changes can you already see in SUMPs?
What I am observing now and what I hope will further develop due to SUMPs are: convenient transfers, well-chosen fare solutions covering not only the center of the metropolis, but also areas outside it. Besides, properly connected means of transport, tools for efficient and optimal travel planning, integration with other forms of transport. There is much more to mention, but unfortunately there are only seven years left until 2030, and I know from experience that the process of implementing good changes takes far too long.

What about rural areas? Apart from FRPA, do you see any possibilities of mobility development in these areas?
I think so, with one caveat. The availability and offer should be adapted for each area covered. I can’t imagine a situation where, for example, there is one bus a day running through an area and at a time when it will not be used. In which case it would be money thrown down the drain.

What is the biggest barrier to changes in 2 years for public transport or urban mobility?
Financial resources. The COVID pandemic has significantly reduced the financial resources of local authorities.

Do you think that autonomous buses or autobuses can be a real solution to some public transport problems?
If so, in what time?

Yes, but these are deliberate solutions that cannot largely replace traditional public transport in the short term. In addition, this is combined with road infrastructure problems and the behavior of other road users.

What do you think will be the biggest benefits from autonomizing transport for operators and organizers?
Reduction of costs and decrease in the level of risks associated with, for example, drivers driving beyond their scheduled working hours (working more than one job) or driving under the influence of drugs that affect behavior, etc.

Will legislation finally catch up with technology?
The legislative process takes far too much time and approved changes are often outdated or no longer valid. Unfortunately, however, this is a problem that we probably cannot completely eliminate.

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Mikołaj Kwiatkowski

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    Mikołaj Kwiatkowski
    Business Development
    Manager - an expert in
    the field of autonomous vehicles, new technologies and mobility.
    +48 790 302 803