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Graz is the capital of the state of Steiermark and with almost a population of almost 300,000 the second largest city of Austria. It is located in the south east of the country. Graz is an important economic centre as well as a university city. It is located between the Alps and its meteorological conditions are very unfavourable for the concentration of pollutants.

The cities dense public transport system consists of trams and busses and since 2007 also of local trains (S-Bahn). The city has extensive pedestrian zones and has been active in promoting public transport as well as cycling and walking, in particular in the recent years. However the share of motorised individual transport is still very high and continues to be a major source of air pollution.

Overall Grade: D 64%

Pie Chart 64
  • Graph Reduction Success Local Emissions
  • Graph Low Emission Zones & Bans of High Emitters
  • Graph Public Procurement Clean Cars
  • Graph Non-Road Mobile Emission Sources
  • Graph Use of Economic Incentives
  • Graph Traffic & Mobility Management Incl. Modal Split
  • Graph Modal Shift to Public Transport
  • Graph Modal Shift to Walking & Cycling
  • Graph Transparency & Communication Policy


Reduction Success Local Emissions

From 2005 to 2009, the number of days exceeding the limit value at the traffic station Don Bosco decreased from 117 to 55. At the same time the background station Graz Mitte reported 116 days in exceedance 2005 and 36 days in 2009. The city had very high emission levels in 2005, with a very high share of background emissions (2009 =65%). It achieved a considerable decrease in PM10 since 2003 (59% decrease in exceedance days at Graz Südstation, 55% decrease at Don Bosco station). Transport is responsible for around half of PM10 emissions.

Air Quality in Graz (ger.)

Low Emission Zones & Bans of High Emitters

There is no low emission zone or bans of high emitters. The city does have scrapping subsidies for heavy goods vehicles, as described in the "Economic Incentives" category.

Public Procurement Clean Cars

The city provided limited information. The vehicle fleet of the city and the local energy supplier shall be gradually transformed into e-mobile vehicles as the city is strongly investing into e-mobility programme.

Non-Road Mobile Emission Sources

Non-road mobile machinery requires national legislation. Since 2011, national legislation is regulating emissions of non-road machinery in areas with construction works.

Use of Economic Incentives

There are subsidies for heavy duty vehicles with EURO6/"Enhanced Environmentally Friendly Vehicle" standards, when in exchange the use of an old vehicle is abandoned. Furthermore, there are subsidies for filter retrofitting amounting to €300 per car. Around 30,000 cars have been retrofitted between 2006 and 2007. Also, Graz allocated €3000 per hybrid taxi between 2009 and 2010. Currently Graz’s parking management represents approximately 26,000 parking spaces, of which the significant number of 15,000 are short-term spaces.

City of Graz - Particulate Filter Subsidies (ger.)

Traffic & Mobility Management Incl. Modal Split

The city does not supply extensive information on mobility management. Regarding speed limits, the city has had the 30/50 model since 1992 with 50km/h on main roads (about 200km) and 30km/h on non-main roads (about 800km, articularly residential roads). There have also been also speed limits on highways since 2008 depending on the emission situation. The city also has MobilZentral, the first Austrian Mobility Centre existing since 1997 and renewed in 2011. There are mobility management contracts with the Graz State hospital, the Medical University campus, and schools as well as support programmes for mobility management in companies. The city has a carpooling initiative (Campano). The city is aiming at increasing the share of electric cars by 2020.

Between 2004 and 2008 the share of motorised individual transport did not decrease much and stayed above 40%. The share of public transport, cycling and walking did not improve and stayed rather low over this time period. The city is currently aiming at improving its modal split by 2021.

City of Graz - Traffic Statistics

Modal Shift to Public Transport

Graz has a relatively good public transport system with six tram lines and a fair number of bus lines. Recently completed investments included the Don Bosco, Puntigam and Ostbahnhof transport hubs as well as the extension of the tram lines 4, 5 & 6, and the creation and extension of bus lines. Extended the evening schedules and introduced several acceleration measures, including reserved bus lanes and traffic light signalling systems. In 2009 investments amounted to €234 per person. Measures to promote public transport included individualised marketing and discount tickets and passes.

Modal Shift to Walking & Cycling

Between 2004 and 2009, Graz increased the number of bike racks by 19% a nd bike lanes by 11%. Bus lanes are generally available for bike use and one-way streets are mostly open to cycling. Bikes are not allowed on buses and trams, but are allowed on some parts of the train network for free or for annual/half-year/season pass holders. There is no bike sharing programme planned yet. Traffic lights dedicated to bicycles are currently being tested and there are covered bike parking spaces at public transport stops. Over the last five years, a bike route map, signalling a nd road signs for main bike roads and the Bike station action days twice a year have been developed.

Transparency & Communication Policy

The website provides live information on air quality, an SMS alert service, a central Info-Point and seasonal environmental tips. Further information measures include info folders, a newsletter, film spots, annual environmental festival and the information campaign Graz steigt um. Direct Contacts are available on the website. There are also awareness-raising measures with media cooperation, TV, radio as well as youth education. Graz is consulting the public for the elaboration of its plans and programmes.

Response to Questionnaire