Key solutions for the development of sustainable urban environment in Sofia
The Bulgarian ITS Association outlined key solutions for the development of a sustainable urban environment in Sofia and presented them to the mayoral candidates.
According to the annual report of IMD (International Institute for Management and Development) for 2023, Sofia ranks 111 out of 141 cities in the ranking of smart cities.
To date, we have identified several areas where intelligent transport systems offer effective and useful solutions:
- traffic management and control, including road network management
- facilitating the mobility of people and goods
- optimising energy costs and protecting the environment
- road safety
Although some intelligent transport systems are already in use in Sofia, their implementation is partial and without an overall unified development concept.
Traffic management and urban mobility need unified interconnected solutions, which are currently lacking. For example, public transport is managed by the Urban Mobility Centre, while a completely different entity is responsible for traffic management, and this is independent of public transport management.
We believe that sustainable solutions to the issues of insufficient parking spaces, traffic facilitation, transport infrastructure development, mobility, safety and greening can only be found through the adoption of a long-term strategy that will be implemented regardless of who is running the city.
The goal to be achieved through long-term solutions to these issues is precisely to improve the quality of life in a sustainable urban environment – a greener, leaner, safer and more secure environment.
In order to find the most effective solutions, detailed analyses need to be carried out on what is the need to increase parking spaces in the central city and in the neighbourhoods, including through the construction of parking lots; the connectivity of public transport with the metro; the need to expand and facilitate cycling infrastructure, etc. Analysing the current situation will allow the most effective solutions to be taken.