The sea taxi is due to launch once again in Istanbul after a 9-year hiatus, according to the company that originally operated the sea taxis. Even though the Bosphorus waterway and regions along the shore are split into the Black Sea and the Marmara Sea, transportation by sea in Istanbul has been limited to passenger ferries.
New Sea Taxis in the city
The director of City Lines, a company that operates Bosphorus ferries designed the new taxis. Production of the taxis began in January on the shore of the Golden Horn where the old taxis were docked and fell into total disrepair. There is an app that passengers will be able to use to call a sea taxi.
To begin with, the boats will work in the same way as normal taxis with the charge being worked out per km, but the city have plans to provide a “dolmus style taxi” within six months. The sea taxis have recently passed test voyages and there have been 8 taxis in service since the end of September, out of the 50 taxis that the shipyard have now produced.
Care of the Environment
The Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (IBB) recently released a statement informing that the sea taxis have been designed to be “environmentally friendly” with some being powered by electricity, while the others will use just 3 litres of fuel per sea mile. The taxis are said to boost sea travel as they can anchor anywhere, which means there is no need for fixed ports. Currently, passengers can hail and board taxis at 98 ports around the city, with the taxis having the capacity to ferry up to ten passengers at a time.
City traffic in Istanbul
Due to the notorious weight of traffic in the city, particularly during rush hours, coupled with traffic jams which, the only way to avoid these traffic situations is mass transit options. However, to date this is limited to the use of bus and metro lines. IBB has already tried in 2016 with an air-rail project, however, this was eventually scrapped.