Munich is the capital of the Free State of Bavaria and the dominating metropolis in south Germany. Around 2,500,000 inhabitants are living in the greater Munich area, 50% in the city, 50% in the surrounding region.
The existence of Munich was first documented in the year 1158 when a bridge crossing the river Isar was built. Munich’s historic city centre was reconstructed after World War II and contributes now together with the shopping opportunities and the fair to Munich’s reputation as a major tourist destination. More than 4.5 million overnight-tourists visited Munich every year and many more came just for day visits.
With 1.25 million inhabitants, more than 300,000 commuters each day, about 4 million visitors every year, and a transport area covering 384 km², ensuring optimal mobility in Munich is a challenge. Munich has an urban development strategy called the Munich Perspective, which has two objectives:
• Improved mobility, to increase the attractiveness of the city to business
• Reduction of land and energy use, and reduction of emissions
The perspective of Munich is to expand and optimise the public transportation network, to relieve traffic congestion hotspots, to increase park and ride schemes, to increase the cycle path network and to tight traffic management and parking controls.
Munich’s traffic plan aims to shift as much car traffic as possible to more environmentally sustainable modes of transport: foot, bicycle and public transport.
The Munich Transport Company (MVG) is the second-largest municipal transport company in Germany. There are more than one million passengers using underground, bus and tram services each day. Munich has a well-developed and highly-efficient public transport system and offers a 435 km-long bus network, 86 km-long underground network and 71 km-long tram network. The driving force behind the expansion of Munich’s public transport system has been the city’s forward-looking transport policy, which recognised very early that a large city can only function properly if it has an efficient transport system in place. So almost every household is located with a radius of 400m to one of the train or bus stations.