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Business News of Sunday, 5 August 2018

Source: Starrfmonline.com

Government to revamp BRT system

The government of Ghana is to revamp financially distressed and ineffective Quality Bus System (QBS) known formerly as Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system as part of efforts to boost the transport sector.

The BRT is a specialized bus-based mass transit system which uses dedicated lanes for fast movement within urban settlements.

When Ghana’s BRT system kicked off in 2016, it was expected to be on the Accra and Amasaman, Accra and Ofankor, Accra and Adentan, Accra and Tema and Accra and Kasoa routes.

But the BRT System was later renamed as the Quality Bus System (QBS) because it did not meet international standards of having specially designed lanes.

The QBS management observed in 2017, the bad financial distress of the company.

Speaking to Starr News at a stakeholders’ meeting in Koforidua, the Minister of Transport, Kwaku Ofori Asiamah said apart from the financial injection, the government is considering the contraflow system to operate the QBS system to attract more passengers.

“The BRT is, unfortunately, facing a lot of challenges, even the limited dedicated bus lane on the Amasaman road they are not being allowed to use so they are now plying what we call mix traffic and it’s not becoming effective to use the BRT because the purpose has been defeated,” he stated.

“It’s becoming a challenge not only Ghana but in Africa but [We] the World Bank, the Ministry and Government are determined to have it work. The BRT lanes are not working. Can we adopt what is pertained in Israel call the Contraflow? Do we bring a regulation to do the contraflow, this is some of the issues we will discuss,” he added.

Ghana’s transport system has been reddened by challenges due to absent of effective rail transport infrastructure and modern transport system.

The situation has given rise to huge vehicular traffics, the use of motorcycles as commercial transport and rickety vehicles unfriendly to the environment. The effect is high carnage and traffic stress unleashed on Ghanaians affecting productivity.

But the Transport Minister, Kwaku Ofori Asiamah assured the Ministry is considering other modern transport alternate systems such as Pod way, Cable Car, and shuttle passenger services by sea (e.g. Tema-Accra, Accra-Takoradi along the coast) to boost the transport system in the country. The Cable and Podway systems depend on the use of cables or beams instead of the road space.

This advanced transport technology will add to the four main modes of Transport in Ghana namely; Air, Rail, Road, and Water.