Local

More buses, new train coaches coming

More than 288 new buses will be delivered next month, while an additional 279 are expected before year-end to boost Zupco’s capacity to provide an efficient and reliable mass public transport system, it has been learnt.

This will add to the 50 buses commissioned last week and 100 others that are on the “high seas”.

As part of measures to establish an integrated mass public transport system, US$71 million will be sunk into procuring 10 new locomotives and 100 coaches to be operated under a joint venture between Zupco and the National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) on urban commuting routes in Harare and Bulawayo.

The Ministry of Local Government and Public Works will also soon commission a study into the feasibility of introducing a light rail system in the country’s two biggest cities.

In the interim, Government is considering increasing Zupco’s bus-hiring fees to US$275 per day to attract more private transporters to join the franchise system, including hiking fares by 50 percent to reduce the subsidy from Government.

Overall, Government’s multi-pronged plan to modernise urban mass transportation in the country involves addressing transport infrastructure gaps, enhancing public transport logistics and improving enforcement of traffic laws and regulations.

A high-level technical team that was set up to develop a plan to overhaul the urban mass transport system has also proposed that Government considers introducing urban tolling in Harare as a way of decongesting the capital.

The Ministry of Local Government and Public Works will also soon commission a study into the feasibility of introducing a light rail system in the country’s two biggest cities.

SUNDAY MAIL

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