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The "Strolleybus" scheme of the Chevreuse upper valley (France)
Background & Objectives
The Natural Regional Park of the Chevreuse upper valley and the Rambouillet forest are leisure and nature areas around Paris. They are located in the south of the Ile de France region, in the Yvelines “department”, 40 minutes away from Paris. Since 2000, the Natural Regional Park has developed its accessibility in cooperation with the actors in tourism in the region.
The main goal is to increase the number of tourist visits and to enable city dwellers, who do not have a car, to access the sites through the use of public transport. A shuttle system has thus been implemented, the "Strolleybus" (“Baladobus” in French). It is operated from the regional train station of Saint Rémy les Chevreuses, every Sunday and bank holiday from April to October.
The "Strolleybus" crosses through the Park and drops passengers at the entrance of cultural sites and at the heart of preserved natural areas. Inhabitants do not have any priority in the use of the shuttle, as they are used to travelling by car or public transport.
In 2008, the success of the "Strolleybus" led the Tourist Information Centre of Rambouillet to ask for the expansion of the service. A second shuttle was set up at the Rambouillet train station. The two shuttles run every Sunday and Bank holiday, from April to October, which means around 35 days each year. The service comprises a total of 2 shuttles of 40 seats each. They cross through the territory, have 11 stops on their route, and make around 8 to 9 round trips everyday.
In 2010, more than 1400 visitors used the 2 shuttles of the Strolleybus: 984 visitors went to the Chevreuse upper valley (they were 711 in 2008), and 487 persons visited Rambouillet (136 did in 2008).
The price for a day ticket is 3,50€. Visitors can get off and on the bus as many times as they want. The shuttle is free for children under 6, and costs 2€ for under age children and students. The "Strolleybus" ticket is also a reduction coupon for most of the local tourist sites.
A joint promotional offer has also been launched between the "Strolleybus" service and the Park House, as you can gain free access to the Pack House with your 3.50€ day ticket, as well as free entrances to some of the other sites in the region.
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This Case Study is part of the European urban mobility and transport best practice collection from Eltis - www.eltis.org.