Bus Rapid Transit project gets new pace

Construction work on the country’s maiden Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project, BRT Line-1, is progressing fast at different points from Gazipur to Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport.

The construction work was hampered to some extent due to the coronavirus pandemic. At present there is no fund crisis for this project. Moreover, foreign consultants and engineers are returning. So the authority concerned is resuming the work with fresh enthusiasm.

According to the project progress report, the 20-kilometre (km)-long BRT project has achieved an overall 42 percent progress. Authorities concerned expressed their hope that the BRT project, once implemented, will significantly reduce the capital’s perennial traffic congestion problem and ease the movement of the commuters.

Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader also instructed to speed up the construction work. He said, “The government wants to complete all the development projects one by one. No matter how much the crisis comes, the development work won’t stop. We will finish all the projects of possibility at any cost. Development is an ongoing process.”

He was presiding over a regular meeting over the progress on a different project at the bridge division office recently. 

He further said, “The work won’t stop. We have to move forward. The financial crisis for the BRT project is over now. So there is no complication in implementation.”

Officials concerned also said that if the BRT project is being implemented. It will be possible to transport 25,000 passengers per hour through 100 articulated buses. If the project is implemented, traffic congestion on the Dhaka-Mymensingh highway will be greatly reduced. Each bus will be able to make more trips than before due to less travel time, they added.

There will be 25 stations, six flyovers, 4.50-km elevated BRT lane from Uttara to Tongi, and 16-km flat road on the route, and 18-meter-long 100 articulated buses will run on the route. There will be an electronic smart card system for collecting bus fare.

Once the project is completed, it will take only 20 minutes to travel from Gazipur to Airport with the frequency of buses between 2 and 5 minutes. Some 25,000 passengers will be able to travel from both the end of the route in an hour.