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In the Gantrisch region the „snow bus“ is an interesting offer for winter tourists. © Bus alpin

"Bus alpin" is helping to introduce new/additional bus services in mountain regions that have little or no public transport. It started with 4 pilot regions (initial phase from 2005-2007; public funding). In the meantime, the association was further developed and 4 additional regions joined the network. From 2005 to 2011, approx. 130'000 persons (mostly tourists) used the new/additional services reducing CO2 emissions and bringing money to remote areas.

I Description of the measure

Title in original language: Bus alpin

Location of CNA: Switzerland

Municipality / regional entity: 7 regions in Switzerland

Category of the experience: Measure
Type(s) of CNA:

Principal nomination: Technological

Thematic field(s):

Principal field: Transport

Spatial scale: National
Time & duration:

Start date: 2005/6
Duration: ongoing

Key word(s): public transport, regional development, tourism development


1) Securing the viability of the existing new bus services 2) Recruiting new members/regions to enlarge the existing network 3) Operating as a contact point and information platform for involved/interested parties 4) Providing advisory support to strengthen public transport in mountain areas 5) Creating synergies through joint marketing activities for all service providers


1) Establishing working and support groups with members from different sectors 2) Developing public transport concepts; introducing the services 3) Securing the funds in the initial phase 4) Marketing the new bus services, networking and PR work 5) Operating the website ""


From 2005 to 2011, a total of approx. 130'000 passengers used the new/additional bus services. In 2011, 7 seven regions (the famous Greina valley is served from the Cantons of Grisons and Ticino making it acutally 8) across Switzerland are benefiting form the new/additional bus services. The results of a survey based on a questionnaire (for the initial phase 2005-2007 only) are as follows: 1) Without the new bus services, 30% of passengers would have travelled by car to these or other regions. 2) Taking into account the emissions deriving from the new bus services, the reduction in car usage represents a net saving of 100 tons of CO2. 3) The initiative generated 2 million Swiss francs in added value (initial phase only) 4) The initiative has received public recognition in terms of several prizes (e.g. it is one of CIPRA's winning cc.alps projects)

II Assessment criteria

Mitigation effects: High

Based on a survey, 30% of the transported people switched from individual car traffic to public transport. It was estimated that the new bus services are responsible for a reduction in CO2 emissions of approx. 100 tons of CO2 for the period 2006-2007 (initial phase; newer data is not available)

Impacts on adaptation: Neutral


Impacts on environment:

- Landscape: Positive
- Alpine ecosystems / biodiversity: Positive
- Water / soil / air: Positive
- "Other": None

More public transport (and less individual car traffic) means less CO2 emissions, better air quality, less noise, less congestion, less "wild" parking etc.

Impacts on society:

- Social justice: Positive
- Regional / cultural identity: Neutral
- "Other": None

Bus alpin is not only used by tourists. Locals who do not own a car (e.g. elderly people, students etc.), also benefit from the additional bus services.

Impacts on economy:

- Employment / job creation: Positive
- Added value / income: Positive
- Know how / competitiveness: Positive
- "Other": None


Public relations impact and awareness-raising: Very high

Indirect economic effects are more important than direct economic effects. Direct economic effects: additional work for bus drivers etc. (employment, income creation) Indirect economic effects: In the initial phase (2006-2007), more than 25'000 people were transported. It was estimated that these people (ie. tourists) spent approx. 2 million Swiss francs in the regions - with positive effects on regional employment, income and competitiveness. (New data is not available)

Transferability: High

The CNA is running. Knowlegde and experience are available. Given a few prerequisites (e.g. commitment and financial resources), the CNA would be rather easily transferable.

Cross sectoral and integrative approach: High

The CNA is not explicitly aiming at carbon neutrality. However, it focuses on reducing the negative effects of leisure traffic (CO2 emissions, congestion etc.), and is part of a corresponding national strategy.

Good governance: High

Cooperation between the Bus alpin association and various stakeholders (regional authorities, regional transport and tourism companies, interest groups and NGOs etc.)

III Executive body and contact information

Executive body: Organizations of civil society

Association (Verein für die öV-Erschliessung touristischer Ausflugsziele im Schweizer Berggebiet); supported by Schweizerische Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Berggebiete SAB, Schweizer Alpen-Club SAC, Verkehrs-Club der Schweiz and PostAuto Schweiz AG

Contact person(s):

Name: Samuel Bernhard
Institution: Verein Bus alpin
Address: Quellenstrasse 27, 8005 Zurich
Phone: +41 44 430 19 31

Other contact persons:

Other contact person: Thomas Egger, President of Bus alpin, Schweizerische Arbeitsgemeinschaft für die Berggebiete SAB, +41 31 382 10 10,

Online information:

Available documents