Île-de-France Mobilités has set out plans for new regional express coach lines to better connect Paris to its surrounding areas. A master plan for the regional express coach lines was submitted for approval in early December following an initial first report submitted last April. It will see the creation of 45 new express bus routes by 2030, representing a near doubling of the existing number of express services, and the development of improved infrastructure.
The express coach network plan will provide benefits for the 500,000 Ile-de-France residents who travel more than 50km per day to go to work, says Île-de-France Mobilités. The plans were set out following a consultation in April with local authorities, transport operators, user associations and mobility experts, and is said to offer a qualitative leap in the region’s transport provision. It is intended for the network to be complementary to the existing rail and bus offering, without replacing it. It will be accompanied by the development of around 30 reserved lanes on the main congested roads and around 40 new bus stations.
The 45 new express lines, supplemented by the short-term reinforcement of nine existing lines, represents an investment of nearly €250 million, financed by Île-de-France Mobilités and the Île-de-France region, including nearly €70 million for the acquisition of 200 additional coaches, and €150 to 200 million by 2030 for the development of multimodal exchange hubs in peri-urban areas.
Commissioning of the routes, which represent nearly 15 million extra annual commercial kilometres, will begin after the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The new routes have been designed to be rapid, with journey times from terminus to terminus of no more than 50% more than the duration of the same journey by car, with limited diversions from the main route and a limited number of stops, using vehicles with a high level of comfort including plenty of leg room, USB ports, and bicycle racks.