It’s already about two weeks that van drivers try to stick to the newly executed traffic rule and stop exceptionally at the bus stops. But this certainly refers to the central Yerevan only, even on that not all the bus stops are defined yet.
Well, if compared with the image before this, it’s obvious that the change must serve to the better, as before the drivers would take passengers and drop them off at wherever they would like. Though I myself entered into some bickering with drivers who would refuse to stop at the place I wanted preferring to stop some 200 meters away bringing the argument that it was the bus stop, to which my argument always was that why did they take me from a non-bus stop then. If before the rule was for everyone I would obey without аny confrontation.
In the first two days of the execution of this rule, while the police cars were wandering in the central parts of the city shouting some incomprehensible sounds through their loud-speakers and giving orders to the mini-bus drivers as where to stop and where not, everything was in a mess. The passengers couldn’t understand why the buses weren’t stopping and why they had to run after them. The passengers in the buses couldn’t get why the drivers wouldn’t stop at the places they would ask. “What do they want from our lives?”, shouted a driver referring to the police. It was more than clear – they wanted to bring order. But…
The order was established to a certain extent only and not as it was expected.
Not all the stops are determined and not all the signs are hung in the central Yerevan, let alone the suburbs of the city where the rule is out of function yet. So now the drivers stop at whatever place they think it could be a stop.
Say a passenger wants to get off at Sayat Nova street in front of the Opera House, but the driver stops only at Teryan and Moskovyan intersection, where I couldn’t see any stop sign. Do you figure how away he took the poor old lady!!! Or I want to get off at Amiryan and Mashtots crossroads and turn to the right, but the driver says that the stop is in front of the market which is some 500 meters to the left whereas the previous stop was at the Republic Square. So despite of the driver’s angry voice not to open the door when he saw me rising I literally jumped of the van when it stopped at the intersection for the red light. Sorry I wasn’t going to walk some half kilometers back to the place I would have just passed. Now when I don’t see any stop around with a bit of a sarcasm injected I ask them to stop at THEIR stop, that works!
Although now the scene is much better. If before in order to get a bus people would shake their hands from every 50 meters, now they pile up at a certain place. I hope soon they will be also trained to make queues for getting on the buses.
Of course this would be a wonderful mean to stop the escalation of traffic jams which nowadays are very usual in Yerevan streets. But while only irresolute measures are taken the changes haven’t appeared on the surface yet. To hope for them? They say more stops will be erected in the near future. Again a question – should all the promises be realized on the eve of approaching elections? Or do they usually need some 4 years for putting them into action?