Friday, August 8, 2008

Ahmedabad cancels BRTS tenders

Ahmedabad: Ahmedabad has decided against going ahead with a Delhi-like bus rapid transit system (BRTS) - not because the city fears the traffic mess the experimental project has created in the national capital, but because of project costs.

The Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) has cancelled the tender it had invited for its ambitious BRTS project, saying contractors were demanding high rates to run buses. Tenders will be invited afresh.

Municipal commissioner I P Gautam told on Sunday that contractors had quoted rates between Rs 65 and Rs 72 per km to run public transport buses in the proposed system, but the rates were unacceptable and needed revision.

The high rates would make the BRTS project non-viable as that would lead to higher fares, and this may force people to opt for the existing Ahmedabad Municipal Transport Service (AMTS) bus services which would be considerably cheaper, officials said.

The AMC is anxious that there is no significant difference in fares of AMTS and BRTS services as it wants more people to use the BRTS service. Only nine percent of the city's population uses the AMTS bus service at present, causing vehicle pressure on roads.(IANS)

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