Council seeks partners to set up new bus shelters

The Bulawayo City Council (BCC) is seeking partners to set up new bus shelters at all the termini around the city.

Commuters have complained of the lack of bus shelters in the pickup points which exposes them to bad weather conditions. 

According to the latest town, lands and planning report,  the Acting Director of the Town Planning Department reported (11th August 2021) that in terms of the Urban Councils Act it was the prerogative of Local Authorities to provide public transport infrastructure for use by the travelling public in the cities and in local authority areas.

“It will be also noted that currently the public transport infrastructure, especially lay-byes and bus shelters were in a state of neglect and disrepair. One option was to burden the residents by levying them fees to revamp these infrastructures or Council to find financial resources to attend to this infrastructure,” read the report.

“There was also the option of bringing in private players to help in the revamping of these infrastructures. If we bring in private players, we could devise a system where they derive mileage by flying adverts on the bus shelters, this has happened in many instances.”

The report stated that the city will be divided into routes so that the private and public partners would select the routes in which they were interested.

Meanwhile, Ward 22 Councillor Rodney Jele supported the call for an expression of interest in revamping and repairing bus stop shelters.

“He was, however, concerned about lighting at night. He suggested that solar lights be erected in each and every bus stop shelter,” read the Council minutes.

Ward 13 Councillor Frank Javangwe said the bus stop shelters should be monitored and vending activities not allowed.

“The shelter should be opened on both sides,” he said

In addition, ward 4 Councillor, Silas Chigora supported the opening of bus stop shelters on all sides as these would prevent fouling and immoral activities.

Bulawayo Residents Association (BURA) Chairperson, Winos Dube welcomed the move saying it will protect commuters from bad weather elements.

“This will be a good thing if the council wants to put bus shelters in different points where residents board buses as this will protect residents from bad weather such,” said Dube.

“We hope that even the people who will be given these tenders are local people as this is also job creation opportunity for residents.”

Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association (BPRA) Secretary for Administration said the development is long overdue.

“Construction of bus shelters is long overdue. It is in line with the latest developments in the transport sector. It provides residents or passengers with protection from the sun’s direct heat, rain and other adverse weather elements,” he said.

“If properly constructed they should have adequate lighting and security and above all decentralise and decongest what is currently obtaining at Hamara, Lobengula street and other loading bays. The shelters must be in all the wards termini.”

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