Vakra: If Tallinn Wants to Be Green, It Should Keep Trolleybuses
In a piece penned for Postimees, Rainer Vakra, the Social Democrats' recently elected Tallinn branch chairman, said Tallinn should keep trolleybuses as part of the transport system.
Vakra pointed out that some cities - Verona in Italy, for instance - are currently introducing the vehicles, not decommissioning them.
"In terms of environmental pollution and clean air, abolishing trolleybuses would be a short-sighted decision, to say nothing of lower noise levels than for buses or trams. It seems that diversity of transport is becoming a burden for free public transport."
Vakra's rebuttals to the city of Tallinn's arguments were as follows: a power outage, cited as a drawback, would also affect trams, not just trolleybuses; more diesel buses were harmful to air quality; the catenary trolleybus infrastructure costs less than tram tracks; new-generation trolleys can get around stuck vehicles; and trolleybuses have a longer life cycle than buses.
Tallinn City, which has offered residents free public transport since January 2013, announced recently that it was phasing out the trolleybuses. The vehicles were introduced in 1965 to complement the network of streetcars and buses.