All aboard Monaco’s first self-driving eco-bus

Monaco’s innovative new autonomous electric shuttle bus is now in service throughout the Rock for residents and tourists.

From left to right: Georges Gambarini, Direction of the Development of Digital Uses, Christophe Pierre, Director of Development of Digital Uses, Marie-Pierre Gramaglia, Minister of Equipment, Environment and Urbanism, Frédéric Genta, Interministerial Delegate for Digital Transition, Séverine Canis-Froidefond, Director of Foresight, Urban Planning and Mobility, Roland de Rechniewski, Director of the Compagnie des Buses de Monaco and Clément Aubourg of Keolis. Photo: Government of Monaco

The initiative is another step in Monaco’s implementation of its ‘Smart Principality’ concept developed by the #ExtendedMonaco program.

The new experimental form of transport was officially launched at a press conference on Thursday 4th July at the Ministry of State, attended by a host of dignitaries including Minister of Equipment, Environment and Urbanism Marie-Pierre Gramaglia and Frédéric Genta, Inter-ministerial Delegate for Digital Transition.

© Direction de la Communication – Charly gallo

“The aim of this experiment is ultimately to reduce the use of personal cars, to develop public transport and to promote smooth travel,” said Marie-Pierre Gramaglia. “We are entering a period of learning about this mobility of the future.

“If the experiment proves conclusive, we will aim to implement the development of this mode of transport which could be a solution to mitigate the reduced number of night buses because of the induced costs or to serve areas where we can not run city buses.”

Frédéric Genta added that it is inevitable that the future of transport is in autonomy, saying they are also the safest form of mobility. “Shuttles do not drink, they do not exceed the speed limits and they don’t break the road rules! But they are also beneficial in saving space in terms of parking and reduced costs to serve new lines,” he added. “This shuttle around the Rock is not a revolution today, it is nevertheless part of an essential development in the future of transport.”

Monegasque passengers will be among the first in the world to experience autonomous buses. The service will operate on a loop of about one kilometre every 15 minutes and will include four stops: Place du Palais Princier, the Cathedral, the Oceanographic Museum and Place de la Visitation.