Drivers ticketed as bus lanes take effect
ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
The new regulations aim to decrease traffic problems in Istanbul. As part of the project, lanes in both directions are restricted to buses during peak traffic hours.Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality officials cracked down hard yesterday on violators of the city’s new special bus-lane system, towing away vehicles that were parked in the designated lanes and ticketing motorists caught driving in them.
The new regulations, which went into effect yesterday morning, aim to decrease traffic problems in Istanbul. As part of the project, which is being piloted on the Aksaray-Topkapı and Şirinevler-Mahmutbey routes, lanes in both directions are restricted to buses during peak traffic hours – 7 to 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Outside of these hours, other cars can use the lanes.
Authorities are using an electronic monitoring system and traffic police to ensure that cars do not violate the bus lane during the hours in question. Warnings posted at the entrance to the lanes inform drivers about the restrictions.
The right lane in both directions of the Topkapı-Aksaray route on Millet Avenue is reserved for the Istanbul Public Transport Authority (İETT) and Private-Public Buses (ÖHO), while İETT and ÖHO buses, as well as minibuses, can use the Şirinevler-Mahmutbey route. Taxis can use these lanes only to pick passengers up at bus stops.
Some 17,000 people are expected to choose to use public transportation as a result of the new lanes, while officials hope to save 650,000 liters of fuel and 1,500 tons of carbon dioxide emissions with the project. Officials expect to expand the project to include the Topkapı-Aksaray-Taksim, Kızıltoprak-Bostancı-Tuzla, Beşiktaş-Maslak and Yenikapı-Başakşehir routes in the future.