The Namsan Park area will be reborn into a “clean air zone” without concerns about air pollution with the introduction of eco-friendly electric buses in the area.
Additionally, tour buses that generate pollutants will be completely banned from entry, which will enable citizens and tourists visit Namsan Park in a cleaner environment.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG) announced that it will replace all the green shuttle buses (27 buses of 4 routes) that go around Namsan Park with eco-friendly electric low-floor buses that emit no greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide.
Green shuttle buses have been in operation since January 2020 to minimize the inconvenience of citizens due to the limit of operation of 5-grade diesel vehicles in the Green Traffic Area, and enhance the connectivity of the lines of intracity buses. In particular, Namsan Park was designated as a “clean air zone” by the SMG in 2015. The introduction of eco-friendly electric buses is expected to lead to the rebirth of the place into a clean destination that can be called the “lungs of Seoul.”
The increase in the number of domestic and foreign tourists who visit Namsan Park using diesel vehicles resulted in complaints about the inconvenience of long-term parking of tour buses on top of Namsan Mountain and of mobility due to vehicles’ intrusion into bicycle lanes and sidewalks, along with air pollution emitted from long-term idling as well as noise pollution.
From now on, tour buses will be sequentially banned from entering Namsan Park, which will mitigate the generation of air pollutants and particulate matter caused by the traffic of visiting diesel vehicles. The SMG has plans to address the issue of parking for large vehicles that will be caused by the banning of tour buses through using the public parking lot of Yejangjarak Plaza that was built at the end of December 2020 as a parking lot exclusively for tour buses.
For better convenience of tourists who may experience inconvenience due to the banning of the entry of tour buses, a transfer stop will be in operation inside the parking lot of Yejangjarak Plaza. After the tour bus is parked at the parking lot, tourists can take the green shuttle bus via the one-stop transfer that enhances their convenience. They can go up to the top of Namsan Park on the eco-friendly electric bus.
|Parking lot of Yejangjarak Plaza||Transfer stop at Namsan Library|
Moreover, it is expected that the full operation of eco-friendly electric buses as green shuttle buses will be helpful for the improvement of air quality in winter, as it is implemented in the period of “particulate matter season control in the metropolitan area” conducted from December 2020 to March 2021.
The SMG has made continual efforts to operate the city’s representative tourist attraction of Namsan Park as an eco-friendly, clean and clear park. It is anticipated that the introduction of eco-friendly electric buses, the banning of tour buses, the construction of a parking lot and transfer stop will generate the synergy effect that contributes to the creation of an eco-friendly park.
As the number of domestic and foreign tourists who visit the Namsan area is expected to increase after the COVID-19 crisis, the SMG has plans to increase the number of electric green shuttle buses so that they can access public transportation more conveniently.