The new INNOAIR e-minibuses arrive in Sofia
Six fast charging stations will also be installed. Five of those will be in the Tramcar depot of Sofia Public Electrical Transport Company JSC to minimize the investment cost, one will be located at the terminal stop on one of the buses boulevards in the southern part of the city. The buses will join the fleet of Sofia Public Electrical Transport Company JSC.
At the end of September, a test run of the on-demand service will begin in three zones in Southern Sofia residential areas. The goal of the pilot phase is on the one hand to train drivers and dispatch officers, and equally important - to engage the communities in these three areas to explore the application and possibilities for the service, test routes, identify potential obstacles. This process would result in stronger communities, greater equality of access, better economic performance, more attractive neighborhoods, and a more sustainable environment.
The Deputy Mayor of the Sofia Municipality and INNOAIR project manager Kristian Krastev pointed out that people are starting to return to public transportation again. 80% of the passenger flow has been restored as far as data from 2019 is concerned. In his words, "the better the public transport in Sofia, the more people will use and thus reduce car traffic".
The on-demand service will be used through the BUSINN mobile application, which will soon be available on Google Play and the App Store. The app is free and gives access to all the features of the service. The demand transport platform creates dynamic routes based on the exact demand, taking into account the preferred starting point and the destination of all available requests in the geo-fenced respective zone. The mobile app with an intuitive interface uses machine learning and in-depth data analysis to create the most efficient route for each trip, collecting the maximum number of passengers on each trip. The initial and final stop along the route will coincide with the main metro stops or transport hubs.
"Through an interactive mobile application, which you will soon be able to download through the respective app store, you can request transport to and from your home and use it. After the test period, the service will be available later this year. The service will be easily accessible to all and represents another measure towards a more sustainable way of transportation.", Georgi Georgiev, Chairman of Sofia Municipality‘s City Council, explained.