Özgür Soy, General Manager of Metro Istanbul, was appointed as a Member of the Policy Board of the International Union of Public Transporters (UITP). Soy's membership was approved at the General Assembly of UITP, which has over 100 members from 1800 countries, held in Belgium.
Ozgur Soy, General Manager of Metro Istanbul, one of the subsidiaries of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (IMM), Turkey's largest urban rail system operator, has been appointed as a Member of the Policy Board of the International Union of Public Transporters (UITP), which has more than 100 members from 1800 countries. This duty of General Manager Özgür Soy was approved at the UITP General Assembly held in Brussels, the capital of Belgium, on 18 June and became official.
Özgür Soy, considered the most important platform of the public transportation sector; He will serve as a Member of the Policy Board at UITP, the worldwide umbrella organization that provides information sharing and dialogue between operators, administrations, universities, industry organizations and the decision makers of the sector. General Manager Özgür Soy, who has a significant experience in the transportation and logistics sector, will be the voice of Istanbul and Turkey in this important organization that directs the World Public Transport Sector with his experience in the fields of land, sea, air and railway transportation in Turkey and abroad.
“Istanbul's great leap forward in the field of transportation in the last two years has attracted the attention of the world”
Emphasizing that the increase in the use of public transportation, especially the rail system in urban mobility, is seen as one of the indicators of development all over the world, General Manager Soy said, “We are doing our best to implement the 'Fair, Green, Creative City' vision put forward by Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality in the field of transportation we are working. Fast and economical transportation is the fundamental right of every citizen. When comfort, punctuality and environmentalism are added to this, rail systems come to the fore. That's why our municipality has made huge investments in the field of rail systems in the last two years. However, rail systems alone do not make sense. A system that is well-integrated with all its elements, from bicycles to rubber-tyred vehicles, that works seamlessly between transport modes, and spreads to the farthest reaches of the city, is essential for the sustainability of urban mobility. Among these elements in Istanbul, the City Lines ferries, which are among the symbols of our city, should not be counted. The progress made in all these areas of transportation in Istanbul attracted the attention of the industry in the world and we received such an invitation. The UITP Policy Board is the most important organ of this organization that determines public transportation policies in the world. It is a great honor to be on this platform on behalf of our country.”
“The key to leaving a more livable city legacy to our children is the clean and safe public transportation system we will establish”
Stating that a strong rail systems backbone is essential for the sustainability of cities, Soy said, “To reduce the number of vehicles in traffic and speed up transportation within the city, public transportation has to be the priority of the metropolises. Each city needs to develop unique solutions according to its geographical structure. We will do this for Istanbul with all its parties, from service providers of all types of public transport, to transport tradesmen, from suppliers to policy-making authorities. We carry out our work within the framework of long-term plans and strategies that we have created with a common mind. We support these studies and the investments carried out with data analysis and management systems installed with high technology in the background. We need clean, safe and efficient public transportation systems, not only to reduce traffic and speed up movement in the city, but also to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution, and to leave a breathable city to our children.”
“2020 was a tough year for everyone, but a nightmare for public transporters”
With the pandemic, all sectors focused on survival, albeit by shrinking. But for public transporters, this was not an option. Despite the pandemic restrictions and decreasing passenger numbers, it was our duty to ensure healthy and safe transportation of the citizens. That's why we continued our full-throttle voyages despite all financial difficulties. We were able to adapt very quickly to the closure decisions and the ever-changing measures. The entire transportation system of Istanbul continued to run smoothly like a giant clock. Although we have had very difficult times, we think that we have achieved a more agile and flexible structure and that we will reflect this development as an increase in service quality to our passengers in the coming period.
“As the leading company of the Rail Systems sector, it is a responsibility for Metro Istanbul to contribute to the development of domestic technologies”
Stating that the rail systems industry has a very high dependence on abroad, Özgür Soy stated that they lead the development of domestic technologies as the leader of the industry. Stating that 120 engineers and technical personnel work in the R&D Center they established in Esenler campus, Soy continued his words as follows: “We design hundreds of parts, from signaling to passenger information systems, within our own structure and produce them domestically together with our local business partners. We will share our breakthroughs in R&D activities with the public very soon.”
“We are happy to see Metro Istanbul representing Turkey”
UITP Membership, Marketing and Services Senior Director Kaan Yıldızgöz stated that Turkey is of great importance for UITP and said, “Public transport administrations, operators and industry organizations from many cities in Turkey have been actively involved in UITP for many years. We attach great importance to the contribution of the Turkish public transportation sector in the projects developed by UITP. In this context, we are very pleased to see Metro Istanbul representing Turkey in the UITP Policy Board, the most important decision-making body of UITP. Metro Istanbul both has the operating experience of a large rail system network and at the same time attracts great attention in this field around the world with the new metro investments that Istanbul has made recently.”