The Aardvark Speaks : essence, effervescence, obscurity. Established 2002. A weblog by Horst Prillinger. ISSN 1726-5320

July 16, 2008

Tramway reform

Vienna Transport has recently announced a substantial change in the tramway network around the Ringstrasse, which should bring a significant service improvement, with journey times being reduced by up to 10 minutes for some customers. This will essentially be accomplished by consolidating the routes of lines J, N, 1, 2 and 65 into just two lines, which will be referred to as "new" lines 1 and 2.

However, the changes will also render all travel guide books for Vienna obsolete, as most of them are advocating using tram lines 1 and 2 for cheap round trips of Ringstrasse and all the historic sights. With the announced changes in place, trams 1 and 2 will no longer follow their current circular route. Instead, tram #1 will run along most of the northern part of Ringstrasse from the opera to Julius-Raab-Platz, whereas tram #2 will run along the southern part between Dr.-Karl-Renner-Ring and Schwedenplatz. For a trip around Ringstrasse, you will have to change trams at least once. On the other hand, you can go from the opera around most of Ringstrasse to the Hundertwasserhaus without having to change.

I have updated my Vienna tramway map to reflect the changes, which will be in effect as of 26 October 2008.

Posted by Horst on July 16, 2008 03:32 PM to news of the world | Tell-a-friend
dieter said on July 15, 2008 09:36 AM:

Thank you for your map. It was a real comfort for me to see that you only have to change once to get around Ringstraße, and what is more, the cutting points are chosen in a surprisingly clever way. At least if you consider my usage of the Ringlinien as any guideline.

However, I have read about changes that are not reflected there. To my knowledge, there will be no more letter-lines which means that O will turn into a number (other than nil ;-). And it seems that they also want to prolong 71.

Do you have different information about these?

dieter said on July 18, 2008 08:35 AM:

Well, it pays to reread. From what I remember, the other changes are to take place not before the beginning of 2009. And you specifically state that your map reflects the changes of October 26th...
(Somewhat makes me feel chilly to think of the beginning of a new year in mid july ;-)

Horst said on August 3, 2008 03:31 PM:

There is no official word yet as to which number line O will become. 66 or 70 are likely, although the latter makes no sense. They may, however, choose an entirely different number if it is extended through the former Nordbahnhof area.

There is a separate map on my metro website that shows the changes planned for 2009 -- which is renaming line D to 3 and extending and renaming line 71.

In the meantime, check out this link:
for an article on the particularly sad state of the tramway network of Vienna, which is about the only network in all of Europe that is not being extended.

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