Aquabus Public Transport Season to Open

Aquabus Public Transport Season to Open

Published: May 23, 2012 (Issue # 1709)

The city’s public water transport system is to launch the new navigation season for its aquabuses on Tuesday, May 29, the city’s Transport and Transit Policy Committee announced on its website.

A total of 20 moorings with distinctive yellow roofs are being installed along the routes. The moorings include information displays in Russian and English.

The three inner-city lines will connect Rybatskaya metro station and Sverdlovskaya embankment (Nevskaya line), Sverdlovskaya embankment and Universitetskaya embankment (Central line); and Arsenalnaya embankment and Yelagin Island (Primorskaya line). These routes are serviced by 12-seat boats that can reach speeds of up to 60 kilometers per hour. Boats are supposed to run every 10 to 15 minutes between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. However, in previous years, aquabuses proved to be less frequent than advertized, and have also been known not to stop at every mooring along the route if they are full.

Tickets cost 54 rubles ($1.70) per trip, with tickets for children aged five to 10 and for large items of luggage costing 27 rubles ($0.87). Children under five travel for free.

The aquabus network also includes 120-seat boats operating between St. Petersburg’s Arsenalnaya embankment and the town of Kronstadt, which is located on the island of Kotlin in the Gulf of Finland (Kurortnaya line). These run several scheduled trips a day, at 100 rubles for full-price tickets, while discounted tickets cost half of that.

A line between Kronstadt and the coastal suburb of Lomonosov was canceled last year after a bus route (no. 175) running along the St. Petersburg dam was launched. A planned line from Kronstadt to Zelenogorsk has also been put on hold, while a line between central St. Petersburg and Petrodvorets, where the former imperial estate of Peterhof is located, may be launched this year, website reported, citing sources at City Hall.

About 450,000 people used aquabuses in 2011, with numbers expected to rise to 500,000 or 600,000 passengers this year. Dmitry Ignatyev, a senior inspector at the city’s Transport Committee, told Delovoi Peterburg newspaper that 108 million rubles ($3.5 million) was spent to subsidize the aquabus network last year.

The aquabuses will operate through the summer and into the early autumn, subject to weather conditions.

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