Transforming Kampala public transport by introducing standard buses

As part of the Kampala City Roads Rehabilitation Project supported by the African Development Bank (AfDB), Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) has appointed Transitec-ODA to provide technical advisory services for supporting the implementation of bus transit services in the city of Kampala.

This is necessitated by Kampala’s chronic traffic congestion situation, which is worsened by the fact that Kampala’s public transport sector currently relies on low-capacity 14-seater minibuses commonly known as “taxis” and single passenger motorcycles (“boda-bodas”), which occupy more road space than high-capacity public transport buses would for the same number of passengers.

KCCA intends to transform the City’s public transport sector by encouraging the introduction of standard buses, BRT and passenger train services in the capital city. KCCA also intends to tackle the existing hardships faced by commuters (lack of committed timetables, lack of organised stops along the routes, unregulated fares, lack of travel information, amongst many others) and to regulate the public transport industry.

To this end, Transitec and Organisation Development Africa (ODA), in consortium with Transport Economic Support Services (TESS) and Urban Research and Training Consultancy (URTC) embarked on its inception mission from August 28th – September 1st, to obtain first-hand information on the ground and set the ball rolling for this assignment. The mission presented a much-needed opportunity to interact with project stakeholders such as KCCA, Ministry of Works and Transport, Transport Operators (unions), and Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) at an in-depth level to thoroughly understand the project’s context and background, as well as clarify expectations. The last day of the mission coincided with a Consultative Forum for stakeholders in the transport industry. This forum, which is periodically organized serves as a platform to unify stakeholder interest in improving Kampala’s urban mobility situation, and is meant to empower all relevant stakeholders to play a role in transport.

This assignment follows a previous study – Paratransit and street usage study in Kampala– financed by AFD and conducted by a consortium led by Transitec and Suez Consulting. This previous study targeted the improvement of public transport and public space organisation and operations in preparation for the introduction of a Bus Rapid Transit System. With great expectations, it is earnestly hoped that Transitec’s further contribution in Kampala will trigger actions that will change the daily life in Kampala.

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