Public transport as the backbone of Vienna’s urban development

20 August 2014  •  Author(s): Maria Vassilakou, Deputy Mayor of Vienna

Maria Vassilakou, Deputy Mayor of Vienna

Maria Vassilakou, Deputy Mayor of Vienna

In recent years, Vienna has been characterised by a notable trend towards public transport: today, as much as 39% of all trips made by the Viennese are by public transport; as a result, Vienna is one of the international leaders in this respect. Cycling, too, is on a steady rise, as more than 6% of all trips within the city use the bike as a means of transport. The share of pedestrians remains stable at a remarkable 28%. Correspondingly, traffic loads along important arteries in densely built-up zones of the city have decreased. These positive trends are juxtaposed by a number of challenges that, due to the population growth forecast for Vienna, are likely to increase over coming years. The ‘public transport package’ is a response to this challenge and Maria Vassilakou – Deputy Mayor of Vienna, explains more.

Urban growth
In the coming decades, cities all over the world will grow by leaps and bounds. 2010 was the first year in history when more people were living in cities than in rural areas. By 2050, the share of urbanites will have increased to fully 70% of the world’s population. In Vienna, too, the urbanisation trend is prominently visible. Vienna is currently the fastest-growing city in the German-speaking region, and there is every indication that this dynamic process will continue in the coming years. By 2025, current forecasts suggest that Vienna will have more than 1.9 million inhabitants, reaching the two-million mark by 2030. This rapid growth obviously brings a number of challenges, e.g. continued affordability of life in the city and corresponding infrastructure standards. However, it should not be forgotten that urban growth also harbours enormous opportunities, such as variety, openness and economic growth.

Urban Development Plan 2025 – urban development and mobility
Over the past two years, the City of Vienna has given a great deal of attention to its development, the predicted population growth 
and related opportunities and challenges. The Urban Development Plan 2025 was compiled in the context of a communicative editing process. The fields of urban development and mobility were covered jointly, and concrete initiatives were outlined. The Urban Development Plan 2025 was adopted by the Vienna City Council in June 2014. In the foreseeable future, Vienna will continue to systematically promote eco-friendly means of transport (walking, cycling and public transport). In modal split terms, the objective is ‘80-20’, i.e. the Viennese should take 80% of all trips within the city with public transport, by bike or on foot, while the mode-share of motorised individual traffic is to drop to 20% by 2025. Public transport is and remains the backbone of Vienna’s mobility.

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