55 million people in Germany lack adequate public transport connections
Germany has long been trying to encourage people to use public transportation instead of driving, to help it achieve its climate targets. But according to a new study, millions of people in the federal republic lack the adequate connections to make this a reality.
Urban vs rural divide in German public transport connections
Only around 27 million people in Germany have access to very good public transport options - and above all they live in large German cities and metropolitan areas. The other 55 million people who live in suburban or rural areas have to contend with an offer that is significantly lower and often inadequate.
This is the main takeaway of a new mobility study, conducted by the Deutsche Bahn subsidiary ioki and seen by the Funke Media Group. Researchers found that, of the network of 230.000 bus and train stops in Germany, less than half are served hourly or more frequently. This marks a stark contrast to the situation in large cities, where 80 percent of residents have at least one hourly service.
Government called upon to help expand network
In response to the report, the German Association of Towns and Municipalities called on the government to help expand and better connect transport networks. “The federal government is called upon here,” said managing director Gerd Landsberg, arguing that expanding transport links shouldn’t be left for individual municipalities to fund.
ioki’s report suggested that one possible solution could be to expand the use of on-demand shared taxis as a major part of public transport networks. “Flexible, on-demand vehicles that can take someone from their front door to the next bus or train station at the call of an app could offer public transport to around 25 million people,” said ioki managing director Michael Barillère-Scholz.
Deutsche Bahn has already integrated more than 300 of these on-demand vehicles into its system, helping around 7 million passengers get to their destination.