communities leading change

From captive audience to active consumers

About the project

The project initiates, develops and assists a network of communities across Israel, which constitute existing and potential consumers of public transportation, in organizing action as a community. Activities include acquiring knowledge and skills for public action on issues of public transport (PT), tools for organizing an effective and influential community, assistance in formulating requirements from the authorities and from transport operators, and leading nation-wide efforts.


The project aims to change existing patterns – from captive audience to a community of influencing consumers that will improve public transportation in Israel. So far, we have located key figures within selected communities across Israel and formed eight activists groups dedicated to solving the specific transport problems in their communities. We have oriented and guided the groups at the verge of their founding and initial activities and prepared professional background materials for their use.


The project has already brought important achievements both in the local and national level: on May this year, we organized a public hearing with the representatives of the "Kavim" bus company prior to its entrance as operator of the bus service in the area of Bik'at Hanadiv and Wadi Ara. This set an important precedent, for the first time a dialogue was created between a public transport operator and the general public. As the leading organizations promoting public action for the improvement of public transport, we have become an address for groups and citizens seeking to make change in their communities, for whim we provide with active consultancy and professional assistance to start public campaigns.


Activity of local groups


Wadi Ara & Bikaat Hanadiv: Launching new public transport operator

The public transport services today in the area of Wadi Ara and Bikaat Hanadiv are very poor.

"Kavim" Bus Company had recently won the bid issued by the ministry of transport (MOT) for the operation of the bus service in the area. "Kavim" is due to start operate services in the upcoming months, with additional new bus lines, renovation of bus stops, increasing the frequency of buses, active signposting indicating Next Bus arrival, and more. The upgrading of the public transport network in Wadi Ara was given a special emphasis in the bid.From our past experience, it is common that the public transport operator that wins the MOT's bid fails to fulfill all of its obligations. Therefore, the main goal of the local group is to monitor Kavim's actions, to emphasize the community transportation needs and to corroborate that the company will fulfill the obligations in the bid.


Outcomes & Accomplishments

We have assembled a group consisting of Arab and Jewish residents from the communities that will use "Kavim" services. The group is comprised from Local Councils members and key social activists. We have arranged a public meeting of the group, the general public and key local political figures with the "Kavim" company CEO and other representatives that took place in Binyamina on 7/5. We have published the event in the local media (in 3 different newspapers), in the social media and in the local councils websites and forums. The meeting set an important precedent, for the first time in Israel the bus operator representatives met with the community prior to the company's beginning of operation and have come to learn about the specific needs of their new consumers. A breakthrough was achieved by the fact that for the first time a dialogue was created between a public transport operator and the general public.   


Project goals

For the upcoming 6 months:

1. Maintaining a constant dialogue between the group and "Kavim" company in order to improve the level of service to the end user.

2. The production of a pamphlet by "Kavim" directed to the community, detailing the upcoming changes to the public transport scheme.


For the upcoming 1.5 year:

1. The improvement of the public transport condition in the Arab towns and the addition of even more new bus lines operating in the Arab sector.

2. Implementation of all of the obligations of "Kavim" according to the bid.

3. At least 5 council members from 3 different local councils will dedicate themselves to   promote public transport.

4. The appointment of a public transport coordinator within the local councils.

5. The municipal '106' service will also address and handle public transport issues.


Ashdod – Public participation in PT planning

Ashdod had recently won the MOT's contest, "Sustainable Transport Model City" granting 250 Million Dollars for the implementation of the project. Ashdod's residents are experiencing problematic bus services; the connection between the northern part of the city to its southern part is inadequate, as well as the connection to the train station and the general frequency of buses. Although the new transport program will bring an important and comprehensive reform, it doesn't address some of the urgent and specific needs of the residents. Therefore, the group's main goal is to increase the frequency of bus lines that will serve all the areas around the city.


Outcomes & Accomplishments

We have comprised a group of young residents between the ages of 16-35, interested in the promotion of public transport in the city. The group had started to map all of the bus lines in the city, with emphasis on arrival to the train station and locating the elements within city hall relevant for the promotion of the issue. Furthermore, the group conducted a survey for train users and the means by which they commute from their homes to the train.

On 8/5 we organized a public hearing for the presentation of the new sustainable transport program in Ashdod. As a result of the hearing we managed to add additional local activists to the group. Despite we invited representatives from the city of Ashdod to participate in the hearing, they declined. We hope that the further activity of the group will persuade elements within city hall to commence in better process of public participation prior to the implementation of this groundbreaking and important program.


Project goals

For the upcoming 6 months:

1. Expand and strengthen the group

2. Create a work plan while holding a dialogue with relevant partners such as "Egged", the municipality of Ashdod and the MOT.

3. The city call center will also deal with transport issues.

4. Influence the local parties in the upcoming elections to address transport issues in their platforms.


For the upcoming two years:

1. Formulate a better networking between the different parts of the city.

2. Introduce changes to the sustainable transport city plan, in order to provide additional solutions to the transportation needs of the public.   



Haifa- Public initiative for the improvement of the PT level of service

The residents of Haifa are facing many PT problems such as the lack of information in the stations , accessibility difficulties in bus stops, poor frequency of buses And more. The group, dozens of members from all over Haifa aims to improve the PT quality of service in Haifa and to accommodate the needs of the residents to the services provided by the PT operators.


Outcomes & Accomplishments

The group had started a dialogue process with the Haifa Municipality and had several meetings with high ranking officials. The Haifa Municipality is showing a strong will to promote solutions for the acute PT problems in the city. In meetings of the group with representatives from Egged, the municipality and the MOT, we supported the group by providing professional expertise & knowledge. This for example, obliged elements within Egged to stick to the facts on some of the issues discussed in the meeting.


Project goals

For the upcoming year:

1. The creation of a constant and firm dialogue with the Haifa municipality that will bring for a long term decisions and actions.

2. Providing the activists professional tools and knowledge about PT.

3. Integrating the Carmelit subway service into the joint PT ticketing system in the city.

4. Following act 98, which obliges the PT operators to display information in every bus stop, the group will monitor and demand the implementation of the act in the city

5. Advancing the implementation of a one day PT pass ticket similar to the successful model operating in Gush Dan.



Hof Hacarmel- The introducing of PT to the region

Today, the settlements of Hof Hacarmel receive no public transport service. The area's residents are solely dependent on the use of private cars. The goal of the group we have been assisting to for several years now, is to bring for the establishment and operation of two bus lines and to enable the residents to rely on public transport.


Outcomes & Accomplishments

The group had completed a year ago, a comprehensive transport survey in collaboration with the MOT. The original thought was that "Egged" will operate the lines. Unfortunately the company had showed no willingness to take part in the project despite numerous applications to it by the group. Consequently, a contact was made with "kavim" company for it to operate the bus lines and to finally introduce public transport into the region.


Project goals

For the upcoming 6 months:

1. Securing an agreement between the MOT and a PT operator for the operation of a bus line in the area.

2. Meeting with "kavim" representatives for the presentation of the initiative.

3. Obtaining the formal approval and funding of the MOT for the operation of a bus line in the area.   


For the upcoming 1.5 year:

1. The operation of two bus lines in the area


Modiin- Makabim-Reut- providing an improved PT service

The city of Modiin is a classic Commuters town, 72% of its residents work out of the city, most of them rely on private car for commuting. The planning and infrastructures of Modiin do not support public transport. The city has a poor PT system while the frequency and time of activity of the existing PT service is inadequate.  The city neighborhoods are disconnected from one another, from the city center, the train stations and from the underdeveloped city employment center.


Outcomes & Accomplishments

The movement "Modiin 4 all" is promoting civic involvement by the community in the city. Some of the movement members contacted us for help. The group is now promoting a pilot of shuttles between the train station and the city. The upcoming activities of the group will be: professional training for the activists; arranging a public event issuing the new PT operator ("Kavim") entrance to the Modiin area in purpose of commencing a dialogue similar to the one held in Bikaat Hanadiv; influencing the agenda of the municipal elections in October.


Project goals

For the upcoming 6 months:

1. The group will prepare a detailed action plan and will professionalize its members in the field of transport.

2. "Kavim", the new PT operator will acknowledge the group and will maintain a constant dialogue with it for the improvement of the level of service.

3. The issue of transport will be on the agenda of the Modiin municipality that will promote solutions for the poor PT system in the city.


For the upcoming 2 years:

1. The implementation of all of the obligations "Kavim" has committed to in the bid.

2. The formulation of a city plan for the improvement of the current PT network and to provide a PT service during the whole day by making use of multiple transport solutions (shuttles, carpooling etc.).

3. The improvement and development of the sustainable transport infrastructure in the city.