Tanzania has released a transport policy and system development master plan for Dar es Salaam roads, which incorporates the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project.
According to the Municipal Director of Dar es Salaam City, Bakari Kingobi, since the BRT project was already on the cards, the researchers for the master plan — who in this case were Japanese International Co-operation Agency (JICA) — provided for the introduction of the bigger buses that would greatly reduce congestion caused by old vehicles (minibuses) plying in the city.
In an effort to curb transportation problems facing Dar es Salaam, the government of Tanzania requested the government of Japan in July 2005 to provide technical assistance in developing the master plan, Mr Kingobi added.
The Tsh4.4 trillion ($4.4 million) Dar es Salaam Transport Policy and System Development Master Plan proposes activities in two phases. The short-term phase has the year 2015 as its target while the long-term phase targets 2030.
“The transport policy suggests that the priority should be given to people’s mobility, but at the same time, mobility of cars is important in order to improve the attractiveness of the city,” Mr Kingobi said.
In accordance with the first phase, there will be provision for a public transport system of BRT buses to achieve high personal travel mobility by developing a robust business model for BRT and associated services.
“We want to keep heavy trucks out of the CBD and BRT corridors inside Nelson Mandela and Sam Nujoma Roads and improve and construct roads totalling 149 km at a cost of Tsh693 billion ($580 million),” Mr Kingobi said. He added that the plan will also improve major intersections with construction of flyovers and implement a traffic management system in the CBD.
According to the plan, there will be road network improvements, which will include increasing the transport capacity of roads — a total of 647.6 km of roads have been identified for widening — and improving the linkage of the network. A total of 286.3 km are identified where new roads are to be constructed.
The BRT project has been incorporated whereby a complete bus network for the study area involving five phases of BRT introduction up to 2017 was prepared.
The bus route network development will follow the order of phased BRT development, with phase I being reliant on road construction.
Phase I (2010) involves Morogoro road (including Kimara to Kivukoni and Kariakoo. Phase II (2012) will be on Nyerere road while Phase IIIA (2012/2013) will be on the busy Kilwa road.
The core objectives of the Central Business District Traffic Management Plan focus on a near-term (2009/2010) implementation of high priority projects whose realisation is closely linked with, and mutually supportive of the impending BRT Phase I project.
The population of Dar es Salaam will increase from 2.6 million in 2003 to 4 million in 2015, and to 5.8 million inhabitants in 2030.