Crossing SBA as foot passenger by ferry has lost its importance during the last decades. This trend has triggered a circuit of negative effects, becoming evident especially in interface areas. Services of infrastructure providers & transport operators are adjusted to cargo & car passenger traffic only, whereas raising service requirements of foot passengers were neglected completely. Ferry ports do not even offer a minimum of service quality, but present themselves as unattractive waiting areas. Transport operators linking ports with cities strongly lack interoperability. Access for people with reduced mobility is limited. Infrastructure gaps additionally hinder smooth transport chains. As a consequence attractiveness of cross-border foot passenger transport is poor & suffers a low demand.
Interface main objective is to develop foot passenger traffic to a comfortable & environmental friendly alternative for SBA cross-border travel. In detail the project wants to upgrade the service environment in ferry ports, facilitate access for handicapped, improve interoperability between ferry & transport means linking ports with city centres, implement intermodal passenger information, prepare investments to close gaps in transport infrastructure & promote improved connections.
Major target groups are foot passengers, traffic operators, ports & port cities. Partnership reflects practicability, sustainability & interoperability. Project activities are focused on the transport axes Karlskrona-Gdynia, Gdansk-Kaliningrad & Trelleborg/Gedser-Rostock but consider ports in the whole SBA as well. Interface improves the service quality for foot passengers in ferry ports by analysing their service infrastructure in the light of customers needs & setting minimum standards for service environment based on a SBA-wide benchmark study.
The results will be compiled in port related action plans. First implementations will be started. Interface closes gaps betw. ports & cities & improves interoperability by harmonizing timetables, implementing intermodal (passenger) info systems/communication tools, testing new shuttle services & preparing feasibility studies for infrastructure investments.
Finally improved connections will be spread to the public by developing & testing intermodal combi-tickets, connected with target group-oriented offers & accomplishing advertisement campaigns & awareness conferences.
Expected results are:
- Enhanced number & satisfaction of foot passengers in SBA.
- Accelerated interoperability of passenger transport means.
- Easier access to intermodal traffic information.
- Better consideration of (handicapped) passenger rights.
- Increased role of cross-border public passenger transport.
- Enhanced economic efficiency of public transport systems.
- Better prerequisites for infrastructure investments diminishing gaps & upgrading service environments.
- Speeded up regional integration.
- Enhanced benefit of SBA interface cities from passenger transport.
- Increased political awareness.
INTERFACE corporate design implemented.
Project Website www.interfaceproject.eu developed.
Three international workshops carried out.
Four public and political awareness events accomplished in Gedser, Rostock and Gdynia.
More than 800 involved participants at project meetings and events so far.
Four Image films about the project and its outputs produced.
TV spot in German and Polish TV broadcasted.
Several press conferences performed.
Different kind of promo material for INTERFACE produced and distributed, Communication strategy and dissemination plan elaborated and maintained.
More than 60 newspaper articles about the project published.
Awarded 2nd place in South Baltic project competition.
3 posters, displaying the project achievements produced and presented.
Four passenger requirement analyses elaborated, covering more than 3.000 interviews in the ports and on board ferries between Gdynia, Karlskrona, Gedser & Rostock.
A plan for reconstruction of Gedser port developed.
One comprehensive foot passenger services related benchmark study elaborated, covering comparative investigations of foot passenger services in 9 South Baltic ferry ports and resulting in over 320 recommendations for hard and soft infrastructure & service improvements.
First service improvements implemented in selected ports –passenger signs in Karlskrona, Rostock, Trelleborg, Gedser & Gdynia, automatic doors for handicapped passenger in Gdynia ,etc..
New ferry terminal in Rostock with improved service for foot passengers.
Started with test operations in 2010, two new direct bus shuttle services between Gdynia/Rostock main station and port established in 2011.
As a consequence of this and simultaneously harmonization of schedules, more than 200 cross-border ferry crossings per week synchronized with public transport services in Gedser/ Nykøbing, Rostock and Gdynia/Karslkrona.
New bus stop in Gedser established directly at the ferry gate.
An agreement (contract) between Scandlines, VVW & Movia on long-term operation of Intercombi-ticket was signed.
Almost 20 different pieces of materials containing intermodal and cross-border info produced for Karlskrona, Gdynia, Rostock & Gedser (Signs at bus stations, inside terminals, busses and ferries, new or updated internet pages, different multilingual flyers & brochures.).
New internal communication systems established between involved transport operators to provide mutual up-to-date info on foot passenger numbers, combi-ticket bookings, delays, etc.
Feasibility study for new bus shuttle service in Rostock as well as enlarged rail connection between Karlskrona Port and Inner City elaborated.
Nine action plans with recommendations for improved interoperability of cross border passenger connections for 9 SBA interfaces developed.
First South-Baltic intermodal foot passenger information system launched: www.portlink.eu C 5: Cross-borderCombi-tickets developed for Rostock-Gedser (InterCombi- Ticket) and Gdynia-Karlskrona.
InterCombi-Ticket is bookable online at new website www.intercombi-ticket.de.
Huge cross-border marketing campaigns for the new offers developed. More than 100.000 flyers, brochures and posters as well as image films and websites produced.
Different bookable cross-border tourism packages (focused on foot passengers) developed & tested for Karlskrona-Gdynia and Rostock- Gedser.
Three cross-border events carried out in Gedser & Rostock.
A comprehensive marketing study for the connection Gdynia-Baltijsk was elaborated.
Cross-border workshops carried out with tourism experts and representatives from the retail industry to give developed cross-border tickets a push in sales.
8 interactive information boards were installed on board of ferries, ferry terminals and in tourism offices of Guldborgsund, Rostock, Karlskrona and Gdynia.
Passengers can a.o. find travel information and tourism information from both side of the relevant transport connection.
A special feature is that some of the boards are connected with the new online information system for foot passengers www.portlink.eu