History of Bus Transport

Unlike the other types of transport, buses were latecomers to the service of public transport in Sofia.

On 20 April 1935, the first bus line in Sofia was put into operation. Later six more lines were opened with total length of 23 km. The fleet of this type of transport constituted 10 Praga buses. Ten MAH buses and 6 Mercedes buses were delivered until 1940.

During the war some of the vehicles were destroyed by the bombing and othe

rs were decommissioned due to lack of spare parts. In 1944, 1945 and 1946 bus transport was performed only by the 8 available vehicles. 

The first bus depot named 'Hristo Mihaylov' and capable of holding 60 buses was built 1949. Fifteen LAZ buses made in Lvovski Automobile Factory were delivered around the same time.

In 1950 there was a delivery from the Czech Republic of 11-meter Skoda RTO buses.

In January 1952, the Sofia Autotransport Company was established. 

It was under the direct management of the Municipality of Sofia and included freight transport (consisting mainly of ZIS and ZIS-pyat vehicles), buses and taxies. 

On 22.06.1959 Sofia Autotransport Company became a subsidiary of Urban Passenger Transport Company until 01.07.1964 when it was separated as an independent division of the same company called Branch-2.

The manufacture of buses by the Chavdar Plant in Botevgrad started in 1964.

In 1968 were delivered the first articulated Ikarus 180 and Chavdar B 14-20. In 1974 the first 100 articulated buses of the Ikarus 280 make were imported from Hungary. The transit capacity of urban bus transport was increasing every year. While in 1965 there were no articulated buses in the fleet, on 01.01.1988 they were already 872. In 1969 was started the delivery of new type of Chavdar G5 buses made by the Chavdar Plant in Botevgrad.

A total of 919 articulated buses and 478 single ones were delivered during the period of 1980-1988 to replace the decommissioned and scrapped buses.

On 01.07.1987 were incorporated three independent bus companies: Bus Division (AP)-1 Zemlyane, AP-2 Malashevtsi, AP-3 Druzhba. In 

1989 these companies were transformed into municipal companies. 

In 1990 was created the fourth municipal company for bus transport – FAT-4 Republika.

In the beginning of 1993 the four municipal companies were included in the fleet of the newly established Capital Company for Urban Transport EOOD.

The new modern buses delivered in the following 5 years came in 1996 – 30 Chavdar 141 – articulated, with MAN units and made by the plant in Botevgrad.

In the last ten years, most of the old Ikarus and Chavdar buses were replaced with second-hand Mercedes buses in a very good technical condition.

Other new buses were purchased in 1998 – 41 articulated Mercedes345 and 21 single MAN vehicles. Mercedes 0345 bus, Mercedes 0305 bus. 

On 19.05.1999 was established SGKT Autotransport EAD, which since 08.12.1999 has been an independent joint-stock company. 

In December 2002 the company was restructured and reincorporated as the independent EAD Capital Autotransport.

As at 2002 SGKT Autotransport AD had conveyed passengers on 95 lines with total length of 1,210 km. There were 463 buses operating the lines.

As at 2006 the bus transport had conveyed passengers on 94 lines with total length of 2,380 km. There were 554 buses operating the lines. The sixteen lines are served by companies in accordance with the Public Procurement Act.