New Free Bus Service to Roll Out in Montpellier

New Free Bus Service to Roll Out in Montpellier

Montpellier Métropole is launching a fleet of electric buses in 2025 called the BusTram

Investing €255m in the project, the BusTram will be free and have five transport lines, serving 110,000 residents who are currently not served by a tram line, extending to 10 suburbs: Castelnau-le-Lez, Castries, Cournonsec, Cournonterral, Grabels, Lavérune, Le Crès, Montpellier, Pignan and Vendargues. The aim is that the BusTram will be launched at the same time as the expansion of Tramline 5 within the Hérault city. 

According to Michaël Delafosse, President of Montpellier Méditerranée Métropole, and Mayor of Montpellier, 83% of the city’s inhabitants and 98% of Montpellier residents will be served by the BusTram, tram and bus.

The 5 BusTram lines will be: 

  1. B1 Castries – Montpellier (place de l’Europe) 
  2. B2 Montpellier (Sabines) – Montpellier (Gare Sud de France)  
  3. B3 Montpellier (Palais des sports Pierre de Coubertin) – Montpellier (Arc de Triomphe-Peyrou) 
  4. B4 Cournonsec – Montpellier (Rond-point Maurice Gennevaux)  
  5. B5 Grabels Euromédecine – Montpellier (Arc de Triomphe-Peyrou) 

As part of the 57km of network, 35km will be dedicated to its own track, separated from other vehicles, to avoid traffic jams. 

The network will be served by 105 stations, five car parks, and will run between 5am to midnight, with a BusTram every 10 minutes in the city centre and every 15 minutes in the suburbs. BusTrams already exist in other parts of France; including Nantes, Lille, Dijon, Metz, Grenoble, Amiens and Nîmes 

“The creation of the BusTram network is part of the region’s ambitious Mobility 2025 strategy, which provides a strong response to the expectations of local residents,” said Julie Frêche, Vice-President for Transport and Active Mobility, Montpellier City Councillor.

“Montpellier is the first French metropolis to introduce free public transport by the end of 2023 (bus, BusTram, tram and P+Tram). With an investment of €1 billion, the Metropole is improving its tramway service (with the opening of tramway line 5 and extension of the L1 to the Sud de France station) and now the BusTram (a new network of 5 lines); while developing solutions to reduce pollution (with more support for cyclists, free car-sharing, 30 km/h, ZFE, etc.).

“The BusTram will be a credible alternative to the car, offering an efficient public transport solution on daily routes in the short term, where the creation of tramway lines would neither be justified nor feasible. It will redistribute public space to make more room for pedestrians and cyclists, and encourage the planting of more green areas with 1,300 trees planted. It will link the business parks (Eureka, Millénaire, MedVallée, Sablassou, Le Frigoulet, Les Cousteliers, etc.), the urban policy districts (Cévennes, Mosson, Pas du Loup, Val de Croze) and the major schools. This new low-carbon mode of transport will meet the challenges of the ecological transition.”

By 2025, 70% of the metropolitan population and 90% of the population of Montpellier will be covered by the tramway and bus network. Work between Place de l’Europe and Sablassou will begin in December 2023 and be completed in December 2024, with entry into service scheduled for early 2025. 

For more information visit:   

Lead photo credit : © Atelier Air

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Jenny Eagle has been a journalist for more than 20 years, writing for The Daily Mail, OK! magazine, The Sun, The Mirror, the Mail on Sunday, the Press Association and The Sunday Telegraph. Her career highlights include working with the European Union as a host and facilitator for the EU Citizens Dialogues for the UN Food Systems Summit in 2021. Jenny has lived and worked in Montpellier for 10 years and in her spare time writes travel articles for France Today, The Good Life France and Culture Trip.

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