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First lot of 18m-long BRT buses arrives.

PESHAWAR -- The first lot of 18-metre-long buses for the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) has arrived in the provincial capital from China and more buses are likely to arrive during the next month.

According to TransPeshaAwar (TP) a provincial government owned company set up to run the Peshawar BRT, there were 20 buses in the first batch.

'The buses were transported from China via Karachi seaport and then were brought into Peshawar by road in an economical and safe manner,' a TP official said.

He said that the current lot of 20 buses comprised 18m-long articulated buses that would run on the BRT corridor only.

First of its kind, these buses are hybrid and can run on diesel as well as electric charge. These buses are environment-friendly and tend to reduce carbon emissions in the city.

According to an estimate by the Asian Development Bank, Peshawar BRT once implemented will reduce 31,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually when compared to the existing transport system of Peshawar.

These buses will be Wi-Fi-enabled with AVL (Automatic Vehicle Location) facility a feature to track real-time location of the bus. Though the bus has a total 54 seats, overall it can accommodate 125 passengers.

A total of 220 buses were purchased by TransPeshawar for the project. Out of these, 155 are 12m-long buses while 65 are 18m-long buses. A total of 50 12m-long buses are already in Peshawar and with the latest lot of 20, there are 70 buses in the city. Another lot of 57 buses is planned to arrive in June.

Read: Damning report of public money waste on Peshawar BRT

The TP official said that the company was committed to ensuring inclusion of all citizens of Peshawar such as students, women, the elderly or people with disabilities (PWD). 'A significant feature of BRT bus is UAS Universal Access System, a key factor to globally rate/ evaluate BRT systems,' he said.

Low-floored and with ramps for wheelchair users, the buses are equipped with automatic sliding bridges (ramps) to facilitate them (including additional seat belts). Passenger information displays and voice prompts are also added in the system along with a dedicated middle section of the bus for PWD. All buses have CCTV surveillance cameras, and a separate compartment for the driver.

'Well-tested for harsh weather conditions, the buses have weather-resistant paint and are fully air-conditioned. All buses have USB charging points along with handgrip/pillars to support standing passengers and we aim to provide best service to travellers,' the official added.

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Publication:Dawn (Karachi, Pakistan)
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:May 14, 2019
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