Addis Sets to Get 500 More Bus Shelters

For the bus terminals, the City Administration would likely invest over 93 million Br

About 18 companies are vying to install an additional 500 bus stop shelters with an estimated cost of over 90 million Br. The terminals will be installed without any feasibility studies.

The Addis Abeba City Transport Authority published the tender two months ago in the state’s daily Amharic newspaper, Addis Zemenand the Authority is currently evaluating the financial and technical offers of the companies.

"We need to install the terminals considering the number of people served in the selected areas," said Dawit Zeleke deputy manager of Addis Abeba City Transport Authority. "The project doesn’t need a feasibility study since we will install the new shelters at existing public bus stop locations."

The shelters can serve up to 20 people at a time and will be located along major roads of the capital. They target passengers served by two state-owned and a one privately owned transportation companies and taxis. The seventy-five-year-old Anbessa City Bus Service Enterprise has 850 buses that serve 106 routes within the city serving 300,000 commuters a day. Sheger, which has 250 buses, and Alliance Transport Services which owns 300 buses also operate in the city along with 12,000 regular taxis, 1,000 meter-taxis, and 222 Qitqit buses.

The Authority installed the same number of shelters a year ago at the cost of 93 million Br contracted to a Chinese firm, Jiangxi Water & Hydropower Construction Company (JWHC), a company established in 1956 with 18 million dollars registered capital. The project was financed by the Addis Abeba Finance & Economic Cooperation Bureau.

"We have witnessed a couple of flaws in the previous terminals," said Dawit.

Sloppy floors, insufficient space to accommodate passangers and design flaws in installing the shelters in narrow pedestrian walkways were some of the problems cited by Dawit.

Solomon Kidane (PhD), head of Addis Abeba Road Transport Coordination Office, asserts that the terminals are going to be installed with an international standard.

"They will be deployed with international standards and will not cause any inconveniences to traffic and users," said Solomon.

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Traffic accidents are becoming a headache in the city which has over 800,000 vehicles with a population of 3.5 million people. Over the past nine months, Addis Abeba has witnessed 325 fatalities, 1,441 major and 673 minor injuries. Another report released last year has also rated only 14pc of roads in the capital as being safe for pedestrians.

Berhane Zeleke (PhD) who has worked at the Urban Development Studies Department of Urban Transport Management at Addis Abeba University for over two decades does not agree with the Authority’s decision to install the terminals without a feasibility study.

"We could not be confident of the effectiveness of the shelters if they are installed without a feasibility study," said Berhane.

The shelters installed last year have created 250 employment opportunities for cleaners, and have generated eight million Birr in revenue from advertisers, covering the salaries of the workers.

Addis Abeba City Administration has plans to install a total of 2,000 shelters by the end of the second edition of Growth & Transformation Plan (GTP II).