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125th Anniversary of Urban Public Transport in Bratislava Issue number
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The transportation needs of the inhabitants of a city has a great impact on urban life. And Bratislava is no exception. On the morning of the 27th August 1895, the first electric tram left the depot at what today is Pribinova Street to make its debut journey. It was a private event. The participants were city officials and representatives of companies. The passengers boarded the tram on Štúrova Street, which then took them on a route through SNP Square, Hurbanovo and Hodžovo squares and on to the final stop at the upper end of Štefánikova Street. They returned to the city centre along the same route in reverse. From there the tram took them to Jesenského Street, Hviezdoslavovo Square and to its final destination, what was at that time Vitéz Street, whose original route was, in the rapid course of history, later extended by the SNP Bridge. Public rides on the first electric tram were available in the afternoon of the same day and were enjoyed by more than 2,000 passengers. A tram stop in front of what today is Bratislava Main Railway Station was established as early as October 1895. The total length of the tramway was slightly more than 3 kilometres and the transport company that operated it (Bratislavská mestská elektrická železnica) had as few as 30 employees. Today, its successor (Dopravný podnik Bratislava) employs almost 3,000 people.
     The so-called Vienna Tram Eg 6, which is depicted on postage stamp, was a peculiarity of the Bratislava public transport. Created to be an intercity tram, this legendary project rather resembled a railway in its character. The Vienna Tram connected Vienna and Bratislava, where it was (literally) closely intertwined with the municipal electric tramways of the period. Today, the Club of the Friends of Municipal and Regional Public Transport has revived the original trams that used to ride their routes and the idea of the Vienna Tram.
     The operation of municipal electric tramways began 125 years ago as one of the pioneering initiatives in Central Europe. That was also the start of the history of modern public transport in Bratislava. Please join us and celebrate this significant event.                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Matej Benčík
Dopravná nostalgia, o. z. (citizens' association)

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