Addis studies successes, challenges of India’s BRT

India's bus-rapid transit systems, or BRTs, are now exemplifying mass transport systems for fast developing cities.

When India was exploring bus-rapid transit systems, or BRT, municipal leaders traveled abroad to study the transport option. Now it’s India’s turn to serve as teacher.

Amit Bhatt reports for WRI India that Addis Ababa sent a “high level” delegation to three Indian cities — Ahmedabad, Indore and Bhopal — for insight into dedicated bus lanes.

Ethiopia’s capital is eyeing express bus service to bridge large gaps in transit coverage, the article says. Last year, Addis debuted the first light-rail system in sub-Saharan Africa, but it only has two lines.

Ahmedabad’s Janmarg BRT network is India’s largest. It runs 107 kilometers (66 miles) and accommodates about 150,000 riders daily, Bhatt notes. Indore’s iBus system is only 11 kilometers (7 miles), yet it has nearly a third of Ahmedabad’s ridership. Bhopal’s BRT is comparable in size to Indore’s.

Underscoring the challenges, the African delegation also visited Delhi, where inadequate planning doomed a rapid-bus corridor that was shuttered last year. The trip was supported by the Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Initiative for Global Road Safety, according to WRI India, part of the World Resources Institute

This story was published with permission from Citiscope, a nonprofit news outlet that covers innovations in cities around the world. More at Citiscope.org. 

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