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Tallinn celebrates 100 years of regular bus service

On Sunday 22 May, from 12 noon to 3 pm, a free family event will take place on Vabaduse väljak (Freedom Square) to mark 100 years since the start of regular bus services in Tallinn.

As the history of bus transport is colourful, so will be the vehicles displayed on Freedom Square, giving a unique insight into the development of bus transport over the past 100 years. At 2:30 pm, the historic buses will head for a tour.

In addition to the vintage buses, there will be a concert by the retro band Regatt, a comedy sketch performed by Ivan Orav, and a play area for children. Guest can buy refreshments and enjoy various retro foods.

The Tallinn City Transport AS (TLT) will also organise special bus routes with vehicles from Tartu, Pärnu and Narva, a TLT bus train, and a school bus, to show the people of Tallinn what kind of vehicles are available in other regions. The special buses will run on inter-city routes to transport people to the family event and back to city districts.

  • The Narva GoBus city bus departs from the Väike-Õismäe car park at 11:30 am, travelling to Freedom Square at 12 noon.
  • Pärnu SEBE city bus departs from Viimsi centre at 11 am, and drives via Lasnamäe to Freedom Square at 12 noon.
  • Tartu GoBus bus departs from Vana-Pääsküla at 11 am, travelling through Nõmme to Freedom Square at 11:45 am.
  • The TLT school bus will start its round trip from Kopli at 11:30 am to arrive at the family event by 12 noon.
  • The TLT bus train will start at 11:30 from the Seli stop in Lasnamäe and will arrive via Laagna tee at Freedom square at 12 noon.

All buses will continue to tour Tallinn during the day.

 

Regular bus services in Tallinn began in May 1922, when architect and entrepreneur Fromhold Kangro obtained a permit from the city government to run five bus lines. The first routes ran from the city centre to Lasnamäe, Seevald, Kalamaja, Pirita and Pirita-Kose. A century later, 550 buses on 74 different routes are transporting passengers.

Today, the TLT has around 550 buses in its fleet, covering more than 30 million line-kilometres a year. More than 100 million passengers use Tallinn's public transport system every year, with more than 1200 bus drivers providing transport services.

The city has set high targets for the future development of public transport. This year, a total of 350 buses driving on compressed natural gas will be introduced. By 2025, all diesel buses will be replaced by predominantly gas buses, and electric buses are being tested. Around 45.5 percent of buses already run on compressed natural gas, which is significantly more environmentally friendly than diesel. When all buses using compressed natural gas are sent on routes, their share will rise to 64 percent of the rolling stock, while the share of diesel buses will fall below 30 percent in the coming years. By 2035, the city plans to provide public transport services using only zero-emission vehicles.