Following the BRT trail in Karachi
KARACHI: If you travel from Surjani town to Gurumandar by your vehicle, it will take you at least an hour and a half, the distance is 22 kilometres, and may face bottlenecks and gridlocks in different areas.
But the green line bus service will get you to your destiny in only 45 minutes. Apart from shortening the distance, the service will also help you avoid the deafening sound of traffic congestion and the pleasant air-conditioning environment will ensure that you are fresh when you reach your destination.
However, when following the trail of the green line bus service, one can easily find that authorities have constructed the trail on the corpse of the state of the art loop of the Karachi Circular Railway. In the process, they have overlooked the traffic gridlock at Golimar traffic junction, Nazimabad petrol pump flyover alongside the corridor of the green line.
Following the route of the green line bus service from Surjani town to Numaish chowrangi, the relevant authorities were busy doing related work of the project. It seems that there was a lack of funds or the authorities wanted to work completed in hurry.
Some flaws have been left during the project development that has ruined the already damaged urban transport system of the metropolis.
“The project is a sheer example of carelessness,” commented Faisal Sheikh, a resident of North Nazimabad, adding that “when they swallowed the KCR trail.”
“They should have constructed the bridge or underpass near matric board office on the crossing of KCR,” he lamented.
He also maintained that the authorities’ failure to construct a bypass at the Golimar area has created the worse traffic jam for the vehicles crossing from Lalukhait Dakkhana towards Nazimabad.
He said that the Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) is the state of art lope that was constructed several years ago. He added that the system used to deal with thousands of commuters daily and urged the government to relaunch the project.
Importance of BRT
The much-awaited project, the green line rapid bus service may be inaugurated next month. The Karachittes took a breath of relief when they heard the news about the 40 news buses that have arrived at the Karachi port for the green line service.
“I wish the project would run and does not become a victim of the political rivalry of PPP, MQM, and PTI,” commented a passerby Abdul Latif at Nagan Chowrangi.
“We don’t want Chingchi Rickshaw anymore in the street of Karachi,” he said adding that, “The green line bus service and others is the need of the hour as the transport system of Karachi is on brink of collapse.”
According to the JICA study report, no companies are operating mini or large buses, they are mostly individuals having a fleet of a maximum of two to three buses.
Some owners hire drivers, conductors, mechanics on daily wages basis and some owners work as drivers or conductors.
Therefore the number of buses is reducing from the road and nowadays only 11,000 buses are on road.
What is the BRT?
The green line service that stretches from Surjani town to Gurumandar roundabout in the first phase is expected to cope with thousands of people as most people work at Karachi South. It has 21 stations while the state-of-the-art corridor has already been constructed in those areas.
It is the city’s first BRT project that was supposed to be up and running by April 2017, if all had gone according to plan. The initial estimated cost of the project was Rs16 billion but has now crossed Rs24 billion.
According to the SIDCL (Sindh Infrastructure Development Company Limited) website, the corridor is 12.7 kilometres elevated and 9.3 kilometres at grade along with bus depot and buildings.
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