The regional authority of Tanzania’s commercial capital, Dar es Salaam has recently announced that with the arrival of 138 Chinese-made Golden Dragon modern buses to the city, the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system is set to start providing its services.
The announcement was done by Dar es Salaam Regional Commissioner Saidi Meck Sadiki, whom explained that the service will start to be provided on the Kimara-Kivukoni route from Dar es Salaam’s western side to the coastal region.
According to Dar es Salaam Rapid Transport Agency (DART), a USD 40.9 million Public Private Partnership (PPP) in charge of managing the BRT, the 138 buses brings the total to 140 since two had been already imported for instructive purposes.
A total of 101 buses with length of 12 metres each count with a capacity to transport 80 passengers per trip while the other 39 with a length of 18 metres, have the capacity to carry 150 passengers per trip according to UDA Rapid Transit (UDART), the private operator assigned by DART to run the system on the Kimara Kivukoni route the first two years.
At those capacities, the buses are expected to carry a total of 495,000 passengers per day when the system is fully operational within the next 36 months according to the African Development Bank (AfDB).
Regional Commissioner Sadiki stressed the UDART’s efforts on importing the 138 buses to start easing the traffic congestion and daily obstacles than the commuters face with the more than 6,800 private transport companies that offer the service in 362 routes across Dar es Salaam.
The BRT fare would not be above the current ones charged on public transport, he added.
DART system is meant to reduce the up to four hours that it takes to go from one side to the other of the city, to merely 25 minutes traveling.
It is also meant to meet future transport demand of Dar Es Salaam’s population currently over 4.5 million people spread in a total area of 1,391 km, and expected to reach the 11 million by the year 2025.