Wiener Linien’s metro station ‘Stadium’ Meeting challenges of big events

3 January 2012  •  Author(s): Thomas Kritzer, Deputy Head of Metro Operations, Wiener Linien, Chairman of the UITP Security Commission and Eurotransport Editorial Board Member

Big events in urban areas involving lots of customers are a regular challenge for public transport operators. Wiener Linien has decades of experience in successfully managing big events and lots of customers.

Shortly before Euro 2008, the European football cup held in Austria and Switzerland, Wiener Linien opened a new station on the metro line U2 close to the Viennese football stadium, only about 200m away. Different to other public transport operators, Wiener Linien could build a new station right from the planning phase. The challenge was to give a great number of the approximate 50,000 spectators a high quality public transport travel opportunity, very close to the stadium. Transport before the event is challenging, but easier, as people reach the site over a longer period of time. However, at the end of an event, no matter if it is a football match or a rock concert, a huge number of people want to use public transport – immediately and all at the same time.

It was clear that a normal station ‘setting’ would not meet the requirements of such an event. Wiener Linien, together with architects and supported by the Österreichisches Institut für Schul- und Sportstättenplanung (Austrian Institute for planning of school and sport venues), developed a station building to be used as a ‘normal’ metro station, but also as a station fitting for big events.

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