Original publication: February 2017
Author: Marc Thomas, Research Administrator
Short link to this post: http://bit.ly/2I37jAT
Available languages:

Transport in Metropolitan Toulouse

Download the Study

Metropolitan Toulouse has a population of around 1 200 000 (in 179 municipalities over an area exceeding 2 000km²). The rapid population growth (+ 14 % between 2004 and 2013, that is to say almost 12 000 annually) has resulted in an urban sprawl that is all the larger owing to low population density (even in the city of Toulouse). Metropolitan Toulouse now stretches over 80 km from north to south, and 60 km from east to west.

This has resulted in the standard pattern of remarkably well organised core public transport services becoming increasingly less satisfactory the further away they are from the city centre. Cars are the main form of transport, resulting in congestion on the major approach roads.

Transport in Metropolitan Toulouse


Car use increases further away from the city of Toulouse (where half the households manage without a car):

Transport in Metropolitan Toulouse

Conversely, the number of public transport season ticket holders is greater in the city centre than on the outskirts:

Transport in Metropolitan Toulouse

Cars are the main form of transport within the metropolitan area (3,8 million journeys per day), except in the city of Toulouse:

Transport in Metropolitan Toulouse

Journeys by public transport (tram, metro, bus) takes twice the time as journeys by car in the metropolitan area, as illustrated in the graph below:

Average distance, duration and speed of journeys in Toulouse metropolitan area, by means of transport in 2013


The percentage of journeys by public transport increased from 9% to 13% between 2004 and 2013. This large increase, especially in the centre, was matched by an increase in services, principally on the Tisséo network. It is now levelling off, notably on the coach and regional rail networks, where numbers have remained static since 2013.

The Tisséo network (Metro, Tram, Bus) is the main public transport service provider in the metropolitan area. In 2014, Tisséo accounted for almost 85% of the 508 000 daily journeys by public transport. More than half (51%) of journeys on this network were made by metro). That year, Tisséo carried 172 million passengers (2.5% more than in 20134) over 29.8 million kilometres.

Tisséo consists of two underground railway lines (Line A – 12.5 km and 18 stations; Line B – 15.7 km and 20 stations), two tramlines (Line T1 – 15 km and 24 stations; Line T2 – 16 stations5), 90 bus or shuttle lines and 9 demand responsive transport routes. In 2014, 45% of its users had season tickets.

Tram and Metro network

In the same year, 12% of public transport journeys were made on the coach and the regional rail networks.

« Arc-en-ciel » is the main coach network. In 2014, it transported 1,8 million passengers (+ 1 % compared with 2013), 31 % of whom were season ticket holders, over 5,6 million kilometres. Almost 7 million people (+1.3% more than the previous year) travelled by rail (more than 2 200 regional trains per day (excluding weekends) and 35 railway stations or stops).

Link to the full study: http://bit.ly/585-909

Please give us your feedback on this publication

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Leave a Reply