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Friday, July 23, 2021

Transportation in KP

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This article is part of series Pakistan Times started to show the aggressive growth in KP during last 8 years of PTI Government.

The challenge was to set a precedent of a subsidy-free, cleaner, eco friendly, more efficient mass transportation model in Pakistan. Under vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan TransPeshawar or Peshawar Bus Rapid Transit (Peshawar BRT) is first sustainable mass transit system in Provincial Capital Peshawar.

One of the biggest project of KP government was TransPeshawar or Peshawar Bus Rapid Transit (Peshawar BRT); is a bus rapid transit system in Peshawar, that had been criticized and mocked by opposition and media. After various changings in designs, with the Peshawar citizens suffering for 3 years Peshawar BRT is completed and inaugurated in August 2020.

A Project under Asian Development Bank Build and Transfer Policy with the lowest interest rate of 1% 27B were invested on the Mega project. A project to facilitate masses of Peshawar i.e. center of trade and commerce and close to the border with Afghanistan, with almost 2 million population. Significant pressure was put on Peshawar’s already weak transport infrastructure. However well thought and researched BRT has attracted a huge amount of commuters, almost 2 lac people are using Peshawar BRT on daily basis. This mass transit system has improved Peshawar’s chaotic, mismanaged, and dilapidated urban transportation network largely.

Best part of TransPeshawar BRT system is that it consists of two parts: the first covers an east-west area with 32 stations on a dedicated lane for exclusive use by buses, while the second part consists of a network of feeder routes in which buses can enter and exit the system to travel on city streets. Interestingly organized route of Peshawar BRT cuts travel time from east to west of city from 2 hours to 45 minutes. Another important feature is, by reducing time and using hybrid buses has reduced carbon footprint. Moreover tickets are available through an automated system and very very affordable and making lives better and easier for poor man to working class.

TransPeshawar has more than electric-hybrid 200 buses out of which 150 buses are 12 meter-long, while 65 will be 18 meter-long. The articulated buses run only within the Service route while the 12 meter-long buses will run in primarily in the Feeder system. Buses arrive every 3 minutes during peak hours, and every 5 minutes during non-peak hours.

Setting an extraordinary example, Peshawar BRT has introduced special vehicles for the people of determination with modern hydraulic lift services. Besides women and elderly people have better access to BRT. Parking plaza is also a part of project which is still underway.

A Bike services is also introduced to help commuters maintain their good physical conditions and to encourage dependence on personal vehicles hence reducing the use of fossil fuel and creating less polluted environment.

Facilitating transporters who had been effected with advent of BRT is also part of plan, till date more than 3000 private vehicle owners received monetary relief to dispose off outdated vehicles by KP Govt. The goal of providing a cleaner alternative to personal cars, taxis and informal public transport, reduce congestion and increase mobility has been achieved successfully.

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Muhammad Naveed Afzal
Writer is a Communication Engineer by profession and an ardent PTI supporter.
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