The competitiveness of Zurich as an economic area depends largely on a future-oriented and lasting railway, road, air and non-motorised traffic infrastructure. In the Department for Economic Affairs, we deal with the important task of the strategic planning and controlling (management and control) of traffic.
The mandate of the Department for Economic Affairs in the traffic area
Planning and control of total traffic
A long-term, thorough planning of the development of transport is done under consideration of the environment, demographic and workplace developments, spatial planning, the changes in terms of leisure behaviour and, of course, limited financial means. All these aspects lead to the total transport concept which forms the basis for long-term developments of the traffic network. The Department for Economic Affairs is competent in the field of implementation and further development of the total transport concept. In addition, we look after the details of the regional total transport concept as well as of the agglomeration programme «urban areas and transport».
Planning of traffic infrastructures
Infrastructure planning takes place under the umbrella of the Department for Economic Affairs. Our experts develop specific projects (e.g. bypass roads), taking into consideration of the needs of municipalities, planning regions and other authorities and offices. It also deals with the coordination of all projects and their funding and sees to the fact that the canton can safeguard its interests regarding trunk roads in the area of the canton.
Representation of interests in the Airport and air traffic areas
Zurich Airport plays a major role as a Swiss airport and is of outstanding importance for the economy and transport in Switzerland and in the metropolitan area of Zurich. The Canton of Zurich is the principle shareholder of the Flughafen Zürich AG and thus also exerts its influence in terms of the business strategy of the airport. The ownership strategy decided by the Government Council defines the general orientation of the representation of interests; the controlling of participations serves the purpose of control and monitoring. The Airport and Air traffic Division manages the Zurich Airport participation. Further tasks: Monitoring the adherence to approach and departure routes and to the rules applicable to night flights, assessment of applications of the Flughafen Zürich AG to the federal government concerning changes to the position and length of runways or modifications of the operating regulations with substantial consequences on aircraft noise emissions, periodic surveys, analyses, and reports on the Zurich Noise Index.
Management of public transport
The Zurich Transport Authority ZVV (public transport) is under the administration of our Department. Carmen Walker Späh, the Head of the Department for Economic Affairs chairs the Transport Council, i.e. the ZVV Board of Directors. The Zurich Transport Authority ZVV provides public transport for the entire canton and for its surrounding municipalities. It also coordinates, manages and funds the S-Bahn trains, tramway and bus lines, waterway links and mountain railways.
Under the umbrella of the Department for Economic Affairs, cantonal authorisations for the professional transport of passengers by motor vehicles or vessels as well as by aerial cableways, inclined lifts, and ski lifts are issued. We also process building applications for private and public construction projects along trunk and national roads and manage the building lines along national roads.