The Railway station located in Thessaloniki, Greece is among the pilot case studies of the City-HUB project. Thessaloniki is the second largest city in Greece and the capital of the region of Central Macedonia with a population of approximately 1 million citizens. Thessaloniki is a member of CIVITAS, CIVITAS CATALIST and Energy Cities. Also, Thessaloniki is studied in the ATTAC (Attractive Urban Public Transport for Accessible Cities) of the South East Europe - Transnational Cooperation Programme and the Urban Mobility Management System (project funded by 50% by the countries of Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the Financial Mechanism "European Economic Area" and by 50% from National Funds.
The railway station is located in the suburban area of the city and it is property of the public organization of Hellenic Railways - OSE. Railway operations are also public (TRAINOSE independent public company supervised by the Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks), while the bus operations are legal non-profit entity organized under private law (Organization of Urban Transportation of Thessaloniki).
In the hub of the Railway station, the involved modes are: Commuter rail, interurban rail, metro (under construction), local buses, suburban buses, interurban buses, taxis, bicycle ways, park and ride, kiss and ride. Regarding soft transport modes, both cycling and walking are relevant to the specific case study. In the first case, the bicycle way of the city (crossing the city center) ends as the terminal, offering the opportunity to the travelers to use all modes of transport that are available in the terminal, and start, continue or end their route. In the case of walking, the terminal is attractive, since both the city center and places for other activities in the surroundings are accessible by walking.
The "under construction" metro station plays a catalytic role for the reconstruction of the terminal and the surroundings, including, indicatively, a new underground parking, new walking and cycling accesses, etc. The existing terminals in cooperation with the investments of the new metro station will enable the reconstruction of the existing infrastructure to a modernized integrated bus-railway-metro station. Among the innovative approaches the seamless transfer from one mode to another and the improvement of safety are designed.
Information provision to travelers at interchanges will be part of the hubs’ upgrading strategy regarding: infrastructure (info kiosks, electronic displays, integrated ticketing devices providing, automatically, tickets for all transport modes, etc) and proper software development (routing, time of route, mode position, maps, etc ) that will apply under the existing cooperative framework for all involved stakeholders.
There are also strategies for integrating land use planning aiming at improving passengers’ mobility schemes. For instance provision of public services, such as banking, center for civilian services, commercial center are planned to be realized in the near future.
To accomplish the objective of integrated operation of the hub, management and business models for the operation of all services – including non-transport related – of new and existing interchanges are established.
As many stakeholders are involved, the development of appropriate resource management structures and business models for the operation of all services are foreseen, defining their roles in terms of infrastructure, ownership, exploitation, operations, management, etc