A smooth ride and no traffic jams. New busses in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania’s largest city, run like the underground: they have their own lane and they run on time despite traffic jams around them. The 140 busses, introduced in May 2016, serve daily around 160,000 passengers on three key routes. Compared to the traditional dala dalas, the benefits are manifold: the new busses are much faster, more reliable and safer and generate lower emissions. People grumbled first about the higher fares but have come to accept them as the price to pay for the shorter travelling times.
Dar es Salaam is one of the fastest growing cities in the world. The population, already now exceeding five million, is estimated to double by 2030. The city is in desperate need of a well-functioning public transport system, since traffic jams have become more frequent with the growing population. The World Bank and the African Development Bank are supporting Dar es Salaam to develop its bus network. The goal for the near future is that as many as 70 per cent of the city’s population could reach the city centre by bus in one hour. Overall traffic safety is also being improved, including the safety of bus terminals and the pavements and overpasses at major crossroads. Finland supports the work of the World Bank and the African Development Bank.
Photo: Hendri Lombard / World Bank, graphics: Juho Hiilivirta