Thursday, February 25, 2021

Cabinet to decide on Gaborone’s P2.5 Billion public transport project

The details about the flagship project are still sketchy, but the figures have been put on the table for an ambitious intra-city public transport system for the Greater Gaborone.

The P2.5 billion project, set to run for a period of three years is expected to revolutionalise the public transport system in the capital Gaborone. 

While the date of commencing the project is unknown yet, the Transport Ministry is reported to be in the process of submitting a Cabinet Memorandum (Cab Memo) for the planned new public transport system.

The ambitious project is expected to be implemented in a Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) model once the date of commencement finally arrives. 

Transport Minister – Thulaganyo Segokgo this week told Parliament that the government has undertaken a study on modernization of intra-city public transport system for Greater Gaborone. 

According to Segokgo, the study has given recommendations, with benchmarks to achieve efficient, effective and reliable services to the commuters. The study is said to have also recommended the introduction of a new bus network and a new vehicle fleet incorporating universally accessible buses. It also details the provision of Park N’ Ride parking facilities on the periphery of Gaborone along the identified corridors to enhance the efficiency of the new public transport system. 

“These facilities would be provided by private sector/investors. This step is anticipated to reduce road traffic congestion by curbing the number of vehicles entering the city centre’s road network”, said Segokgo this week.

Business opportunities in the running of the system as identified by the Transport ministry study include the construction facilities (bus layovers, bus stops, terminals, depots, NMT), Transport Operators, Ticketing (including electronic), Operation of Park ‘N’ Ride as well as Fleet maintenance and management. 

It estimated that if a decision is taken to implement the recommendations of the study it would take an estimated initial amount of about P 2.5 billion over a three-year period to set up such a new bus-based public transport system for Greater Gaborone based on a feasibility study carried out by the transport ministry in 2016. 

“This amount includes the vehicle fleet, bus depots, Park and Ride centres, dedicated bus lanes, bus terminals and stops as well as other required amenities”, Segokgo told Parliament this week.  

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