90 Years of ZET Buses

Total Croatia News

ZET bus service is celebrating its 90th birthday today!

90 years ago on this day, August 11, 1927, Zagreb public transport got its first regular bus service.

Initially, there were only two lines – one leaving from the Academic Square (Zrinjevac) to the beach at Sava, and one from Podsused to Samobor. The first buses were produced by Lancia, and then they were replaced by Opel.

All the buses left from Zrinjevac, except for the bus taking passengers from Ban Jelačić Square to the Upper Town.

The citizens weren’t particularly satisfied with the private owner, Autobus-promet, so ZET bought 30 buses over from them in 1931, for 3 million dinars. The buses and their schedules functioned separately from the trams, so the system didn’t really work that well – the number of passengers decreased and the buses weren’t serviced properly.

The situation improved after WWII, when the old buses were finally srrviced and new lines were introduced. The bus service covered a total length of 45 km.

In 1955, ZET purchased double-decker buses, which were later sold to Sarajevo.

There were also buses with trailers in the ’50s.

Novi Zagreb started growing in the ‘60s, as well as the suburbs, so ZET acquired 20 articulated buses, state-of-the-art back in the ‘60s and the ‘70s. 50 lines were in operation in the ‘70s, with a total length of 500 km, and the network started growing and becoming more systematic.

In the early ‘80s, the ZET network spread to Samobor and Sesvete, as well as the newly-built parts of Zagreb, Prečko, Špansko, and Dubrava.

Even though it was war and the situation was difficult, new German buses were bought in the ‘90s, and the first low-floor articulated buses were introduced in 1994. 

The modernisation process continued in the new century as well –  the buses started running on biodiesel in 2007 and on compressed gas in 2009, so ZET buses contribute significantly in reducing pollution, and it is more cost-effective to run on biodiesel and compressed gas.

Today, ZET has 410 buses, with an average age of nine years, operating on 142 day and four night lines connecting the cities of Zagreb, Velika Gorica and Zeprešić and the municipalities of Bistra, Luka, Stupnik and Klinča Sela.

Photos and text from zet.hr.


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