To meet with one of the objectives of the PDUs (urban transport plans) - to decrease motor vehicle traffic in favour of public transport and more economical, less polluting modes of transport - French urban areas have generally turned to large-scale dedicated lanes.
However, not all towns, and in particular medium-sized ones, have the capacity to finance a tramway, given the amount of investment and operating costs required. For this reason, it has been necessary to see how the reinforced bus mode, i.e. one treated as a real public transport system using dedicated lanes with an optimised level of service (or High service level bus”), might be able to give structure to the city.
The analysis involved checking the hypothesis that it might be possible to bring closer together the level of service offered locally by a bus network to give structure, and the urban characteristics of the districts served, through two examples of urban areas:
- Dijon (250 000 inhabitants) whose policy since the nineties has been to continue to develop its bus network and its level of services by rationalising its offer and treating it on a hierarchical basis ,
- Annecy (135 000 inhabitants), where recent development of the “bus” network was made gradually to answer the needs of an emerging clientele, in particular in peri-urbain area.
These two examples confirm the hypothesis that a network consolidating bus lines treated as public transport system using dedicated lanes can ultimately give structure to the development of an urban area, even if the phases to be gone though are many and variable depending on the networks and the regions.