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Many of those who grew up in the 70s, 80s and 90s nostalgia remember the red Icaruses they went to school, work or visit with.

At a time when the personal car was a comparative luxury, traveling by public transport was the most popular way to get around in Sofia. The fleet consisted mainly of the emblematic Hungarian Ikarus, which can accommodate more than 150 people, as well as the more limited in its application Bulgarian Chavdar. Even in the years after 90, the Icarus remained a major part of Sofia's transport and was used until 2015, when the last pieces that worked on lines 78, 79, 119 and 310 were taken from operation.

Sofia will have double-decker buses, decided the Sofia Municipal Council

Now 8 years later, "Icarus" can again be seen on the streets of Sofia, but for entertainment purposes. The idea is of the municipal councilor Carlos Contrera and the expert the Committee on Transport in mandate 2019-2023 Mario Evstatiev. The bus has been restored and presented for the first time in 2021 in the Druzhba division of Sofia Autotransport EAD, and currently needs certain technical procedures and installation of sound system. At the initiative of the expert Evstatiev, supported by the board of directors of the company, the legendary vehicle has already been relocated to the Malashevtsi garage, where all necessary operations will be performed and will be prepared for operation for tourist and entertainment purposes.

Photo: Mario Evstatiev

"Rides with retro buses, trolleybuses and trams are something normal in Europe and attract more and more fans of transport. Such activities also provide fresh funding for transport companies, and also promote public transport travel. In Bulgaria, this service is still not popular enough, but I hope that with my team and with the support of the metropolitan autotransport, we will change that. Renting a retro bus for a special occasion, an unforgettable birthday gift or teambuilding - for all these occasions, an exciting walk with the Red Dragon is the perfect choice, "Mario Evstatiev explained for NOVINI.bg. He also announced that a proposal has been submitted for a Christmas retro line to run along the already famous "small ring" of the metropolitan center and depart every hour between 12 and 17 of the square. St. Alexander Nevski, the proposal is on the desk of Mayor Vasil Terziev.

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