From Earthen Path to Subway

Bursa is one of the most important cities in Turkeywith its population coming close to 2.5 millions,advanced industry and cultural identity originatingfrom its historical heritage. Historical city centercontinues to be home for many commercial activitiesand preserves its identity even today.For it is mostly a single centered city, its demandfor transportation is focused on one spot. City expandson an eastern – western axis for Uluda¤ onthe south and green belt on the north are protectedby its planning. With the establishment of new centersof interest in the city, focus of transportationdemand on one spot shall be dispersed. The goalhere is to provide a high quality transportation servicethat connects all main centers to each other.Bursa is a city where the population rapidly increasesand thus traffic rapidly becomes a greater issue.Considering the development pattern of the city,a critical point is being reached with respect to trafficproblem. Researches show that traffic flow inBursa city center increases by approximately 11%annually. This picture implies that the traffic loadshall double within 6 years. This calls for an effectivetransportation system in the city. Number ofvehicle owners is rapidly increasing in the city; inthe year 2003, there are 93 cars per thousand people.General aim of the strategy adopted in Bursa for urbantransportation is establishing an “integratedtraffic system” that shall meet the needs of passengersand prioritizing “the transportation of people,not vehicles”.In line with this strategy, in order to find solutionsto the urban transportation problems in Bursa, BursaMetropolitan Municipality has implemented the”Bursa Light Rail System (BLRS) Project” and it isaimed to complete the west – east and north routesof the city.In addition, with the public transportation integrationprojects, crossroads projects, works focusing ondeveloping and improving new arterial roads, Bursaurban transportation is aimed to be modernizedand improved.Completion of ‹zmir-‹stanbul autobahn; Cable wayproject that shall contribute to tourism sector ofBursa; Güzelyal› – Istanbul ferryboat lines maintainedin order to support intercity travel shall allowBursa urban transportation to reach the next level ofimprovement.Road network in Bursa consists of 49 kilometersstate road under the responsibility of National Directorateof Motorways 14th Regional Directorate,close belt highways of approximately 12 kilometersunder the responsibility of Metropolitan Municipalityand approximately 320 kilometers of main arterialroad and again hundreds of kilometers long localroads. 80 % of the roads are urban roads. For theexpansion of city along the eastern-western axis hasbeen envisioned in the recent planning decisions;there is demand for transportation access in the developingregions of the city.