Work on the metrobus in Porto begins this Tuesday. They will start with the Boavista/Praça do Império connection, which will take 12 months. Work on the other link, Boavista/Anémona roundabout (Matosinhos), should only start in June or July, with completion scheduled for the summer of 2024. In total, the west zone of Porto should have works for 18 months.
Mayor Rui Moreira acknowledges the inconvenience, but describes the works as “fundamental” and classifies the investment, supported 100% by the Recovery and Resilience Plan, as “virtuous”. He says that it is necessary to “change the paradigm”, reduce individual transport and make people return to public transport, making the city “more environmentally friendly”.
At the start of this first phase, the works will be located in the areas of Bessa Leite/Guerra Junqueiro and Marechal/Foco. It was promised that as they move forward, people will be warned, in particular about deviations.
When in use, the metrobus is expected to connect Rotunda da Boavista to Praça do Império in 12 minutes (it will take 17 minutes to reach Anémona). Contrary to what was initially planned, a roundabout will not be built between the avenues of Boavista and Marechal Gomes da Costa. Even so, the monument to the businessman will have to be relocated.
Restrictions on cars in the future?
It was also announced that the metrobus will not go around the Rotunda da Boavista. At the top of the avenue, where there will be a station, the vehicle will make a U-turn, leaving the central channel and entering the carriageway. The maneuver takes 30 seconds. Traffic lights will try to regulate metrobus passage and normal traffic. To arrive at this solution, among other studies, a test was carried out with an STCP bus on site (as can be seen in the video).
For Marechal, where the vehicle will circulate along the central corridor, with the rest of the traffic, Rui Moreira reiterates that “they are not going to cut down trees”.
Tiago Braga, from Metro, admits that, on Avenida da Boavista, the metrobus will force “subtracting parking spaces”, but guarantees that “there will be more trees”, taking into account those that will be felled and those that will be planted.
“When the metrobus is in operation, we hope to have 20,000 daily validations. The number could be even higher”, highlights the president of the company Metro do Porto.
Rui Moreira also says that, in the western zone, “about 80% of people travel by individual transport”. Referring that if it continues like this, “the city does not have the capacity to respond”, he admits, in the future, that his successor in the Chamber, in the next term, will take “restrictive measures” regarding car traffic. “It’s going to be inevitable,” he predicts.