A new free electric bus service launched in Brussels on Friday to help people get around the main shopping districts in the upper and lower town.
The launch follows a successful trial by economic affairs alderwoman Marion Lemesre during last year’s summer sales. The buses are quiet, non-polluting and accessible for people with disabilities, with large windows to provide a panoramic view of the cityscape for passengers.
There are seven stops on the 6km circuit with a bus every 15 minutes operating on Fridays and Saturdays from 11.00-18.00 and on the first Sunday of the month from midday to 18.00.
The seven stops are Royal Square, Place Louise, Sablon, Saint-Jacques, Dansaert, Rue Neuve and Grand-Place (actually Central Station). The stops are indicated by the words Free Shopping Buspainted on the ground and a bus pole crowned with a shopping bag.
The vehicles are sponsored by ING and provide free wifi. There is the possibility to download the free Divercities app which will provide video clips about each neighbourhood and the shopping possibilities
This Saturday, as a special first weekend event, at each stop there will be live entertainment with actors greeting passengers as they alight.
Starting next spring, under the impetus of regional mobility minister Pascal Smet, the Stib will launch a daily electric bus loop. At that time, the Brussels region and Brussels-City will decide how to merge the two services.