WASHINGTON, DC, May 25, 2017 (ENS) - Reducing by half the average rush hour travel time by public transport across the Dakar Plateau, a distance of 18.3 kilometers, will be one the most important outcomes of the €280.9 million (US$300 million) Dakar Bus Rapid Transit Pilot Project approved Thursday by the World Bank.
“The BRT will substantially improve travel conditions in the Dakar agglomeration, which currently has 3.5 million inhabitants, with a projection of five million in 2030,” said Mansour Elimane Kane, Senegal's minister of infrastructure and land transport.
“This important project for the Plan Senegal Emergent will certainly reach its objective of economic performance and social equitiy by offering to the users a guarantee of better travel times, an improvement of the level of comfort and safety, at an acceptable cost, said Kane.
“The construction of an 18.3 km fully segregated BRT line will allow the boarding of 300,000 passengers per day with 27,300 at peak hours,” said Tojoarofenitra Ramanankirahinaa and Franck Taillandier, Team Task leaders at the World Bank.
“It will include including three major passenger terminals and 20 stations, as well as the provision of a bus fleet and an Intelligent Transport System,” they said.
Dakar is the capital and largest city in the West African country of Senegal. It is located on the Cap-Vert peninsula on the Atlantic coast and is the westernmost city on the African mainland.
“This mass transit and less polluting transport system will have an important impact for Senegal's economic growth,” said Louise Cord, World Bank country direcrtor for Senegal.
She said the thousands of people entering the center of Dakar every day will be the main beneficiaries of the new infrastructure.
“Women will have increased opportunities to qualified jobs created by BRT operations and the local transport operators will run the operations of the feeder lines to the BRT system. They will also have an opportunity to own a share of the capital of the BRT operator company.” The business environment in Senegal will also benefit from the success of the PPP transaction.
A private operator will be selected and contracted under a public-private partnership by the Dakar Urban Transport Council Conseil Exécutif des Transports Urbains de Dakar, CETUD.
To improve the flow of traffic in Dakar, a new traffic plan between the roundabouts "Boulangerie Jaune" and "JVC" was implemented May 24, with the introduction of a single direction on the roads of this section of the city. Police and security officers have been positioned on the modified arteries and new traffic signs were installed.
Since the new traffic plan was put in place, residents of the roundabout JVC of the Sicap Liberté affirm that traffic circulates better.
Saliou Diouf, living at the Sicap Sacre Coeur 1 declares, "Before, I put a lot of time to go to Liberté 6 by car. So now it takes less than five minutes for the same ride."
The same goes for Adja Sène who lives in Liberty 6. She says the JVC roundabout has become "more fluid."
And for Lamine Cissé residing at Liberté 4, "There is no more traffic jam on the route that connects Liberté 4 and Liberté 6 most frequented by taxis. For that alone, we welcome the measure."
PHOTO: Dakar traffic circle, November 17, 2015 (Photo by Chuck Moravec)