Council’s mass transport system plans have been boosted by the return of ZUPCO buses on the city’s roads.
Responding to press enquiries Director of Works Eng Isiah Chawatama said the return of Zupco to service urban routes dovetails into the city’s grand plan.
ZUPCO buses have been plying the city’s routes from early this year and are using the city’s termini and attendant infrastructure to carry and drop passengers.
Eng Chawatama said council is working with ZUPCO towards a sustainable urban mass transport system and it has a mandate to provide the relevant infrastructure and traffic control measures.
He said space has been reserved at all termini for conventional buses to allow for smooth flow of traffic.
“Specific loading points have been given to ZUPCO at all the existing Central Business District (CBD) termini with special attention to the consideration that businesses should not be delayed, hence putting them inside the termini where combis were operating would then affect the turnaround of the few available buses.
“At Speke Avenue terminus, ZUPCO buses are using two dedicated bays whilst kombis are loading from the rest of the terminus. We are happy to report that movement at this facility is happening smoothly,” read the report.
He said there are projects under consideration as investors have shown interest in developing Speke and Simon Muzenda ranks into state-of-the-art bus exchange points.
“Regrettably, our infrastructure is in a state of despair. However, Council has interested investors who have shown in developing Speke and Simon Muzenda into state-of-the-art bus exchange points.
“Currently council is working with ZUPCO to try and refurbish the shades at the termini so that they are useable during the rainy season.
“Despite council facing financial challenges it is hoped that funds will be raised internally and will also be approaching our parent ministry, local government for assistance in the regards,“ said council.
The reported indicated that ZUPCO buses are using the existing termini though initially the buses were allowed to load and offload from the street as mixing combis and buses was going to make movement in the termini virtually impossible.
“The demand for conventional buses is huge hence an integrated transport system is required, this means that ZUPCO and combis have to core exist and operate from the same facilities.
“The actual provision of transport is best done by ZUPCO and other operators. There are also other players that should be in the system that is, light rail and cable cars will also improve our transport system in the long run,” said the report.