Interestingly, Israel ranks low among Western nations regarding ridership on public transportation. According to a Yediot Achronot report, only 30% of Israelis use the nation’s buses, signaling most are unwilling to abandon their vehicles. The report is based on a Shildor report commissioned by the Ministry of Transportation.
Researchers suggest promoting increased use of public busing by establishing local transportation agencies to oversee the bus system in cities.
In Warsaw for example, 70% of residents rely on public transportation, Barcelona 65%, Zurich 63%, Vienna 56%, and in Tel Aviv, just 30%.
The report adds that Israel leaders OCED nations regarding roadway congestion, citing if more Israelis would be willing to abandon their vehicles and use public trasnportation, the savings annually would amount to 400 million NIS. There are 2.4 million trips per kilometer of roadway as opposed to Britain with 1.12 million trips for the same distance. Portugal has 1 million trips, Holland 978,000, Germany 907,000, Turkey 843,000, and France 520,000.
Shildor’s Deputy Director-General Omer Teper explains total private vehicle trips in the Gush Dan area last year amounted to 850 million as opposed to public buses, amounting to 250 million. The average trip on a public bus costs 14 NIS while a private vehicle costs 38 NIS. If just an additional percent of private vehicle trips in Gush Dan moved to public busing, it would boost the economy by 270 million NIS annually.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)