| At 8 a.m. on Feb. 14, people were lined up 100 meters at the bus stop in front of Exit No. 2 of Hapjeong subway station in Seoul. They sought to take the bus headed for Paju Book City in Gyeonggi Province.
Express bus No. 2200 came after 10 minutes. People started to board the bus, which was soon packed. The bus runs 30 kilometers by passing Jayoo Road for 30 minutes to go directly to Paju Book City.
The remaining 50 people had to wait for the next bus. Others got off the subway to line up and the line soon was 100 meters long again.
One person turned up his collar due to the cold weather and said, "I`m really exhausted waiting for the bus every morning. I heard that workers at the Siwha Industrial Complex commute on a shuttle bus, but commuting to Paju is really unpleasant. I`ve considered changing jobs a number of times because of this."
People using public transportation can also take bus No. 200 from Hapjeong station to the book complex. Since it takes more than an hour to get there by the bus passing through Ilsan, Goyang, office workers hardly find it attractive.
They can also use a joint shuttle bus operated by the Book City Companies Council. Some people who were waiting for the express bus walked across the street to take this 45-seat bus.
Operation of the shuttle bus is illegal, however. The law on passenger car transport allows only a commuting bus agreed under contract with a separate company.