Updated  
November, 05 2011 08:41:45

HCM City looks to boost number of bus passengers

Passengers board a bus in HCM City. Bus services must be improved and routes changed to better meet the needs of residents, said the HCM City People's Council. — VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Phan

Passengers board a bus in HCM City. Bus services must be improved and routes changed to better meet the needs of residents, said the HCM City People's Council. — VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Phan

HCM CITY — The city's Department of Transport needs to develop better measures to increase the quantity of bus passengers and improve services of buses, according to the head of the budget division of the HCM City People's Council.

Pham Van Dong, speaking at meeting in HCM City on Thursday, said bus routes should be rearranged and information on bus schedules should be made widely available to the public.

He asked the department to set up ticket-sale agents in residential areas so that people could buy monthly tickets easily.

Le Hai Phong, director of the city's Public Transport Management Centre, said the quantity of passengers using buses had risen slowly since 2006.

Old buses and poor-quality services had led to decreased ridership, according to participants at the meeting.

Other factors that contributed to a drop in riderships were the price of tickets, traffic jams and roadwork construction on city streets.

A recent survey showed that 70 per cent of passengers did not want to use buses because they ran too slowly, according to Duong Hong Thanh, deputy head of the Department of Transport.

The average speed of buses was about 12-13 km per hour. Motorbikes, however, take only 30 minutes to travel the same distance.

"With the rapid increase of individual vehicles, it is difficult to attract people to buses if there is no support from the city," said Thanh.

Thanh said his department had been implementing several measures, including improving the quality of drivers and assistant drivers, stabilising ticket prices, buying more compressed natural gas-powered buses and adding high-tech features to buses.

By the end of the year, all buses will have a global positioning system (GPS) facility.

Thanh has asked the city to implement a project to replace 1,680 buses and consider privatising the investment of CNG-powered buses.

He said the city should continue its subsidies for buses, estimated to reach VND1.7 trillion (US$80 million) next year compared to VND1.2 trillion this year.

Attendees at the meeting also supported the city People's Committee's decision to allow commercial advertisements on buses.

Bus adverts are expected to bring about VND200 billion a year, which should help reduce the city's bus subsidies.

Dong said the city People's Council would submit the requests to the city People's Committee.

The city has about 3,000 buses running on 146 routes. — VNS

Send Us Your Comments:
Name:
Your E-mail address:
Title:
 

VietNamNews may edit your comments and not all emails will be published.

Highlight

HCM City struggles to control influx of substandard produce 1    HCM City struggles to control influx of substandard produce

High demand for farm produce and the sheer variety of ways in which it is brought into HCM City from other localities makes quality control a very difficult task, officials say.

Hoi An hosts silken rendezvous Hoi An hosts silken rendezvous

Top craftsmen and women from seven silk villages in Viet Nam will participate in the Viet Nam Silk Culture Day at Hoi An city's Silk Village centre on December 28.

Local art smashes auction record Local art smashes auction record

Days after noted Vietnamese artist Le Pho's View from the Hilltop set a new auction record, art collector Nguyen Minh still has a lingering feeling of regret.

Long Bien Bridge preservation divides planners 2    Long Bien Bridge preservation divides planners

Architecture and cultural managers discussed Long Bien Bridge's future at a seminar held on Wednesday in Ha Noi.

Malaysia crush VN in AFF semis Malaysia crush VN in AFF semis

Viet Nam suffered a nightmare yesterday at My Dinh Stadium in Ha Noi as they were knocked out of the ASEAN Football Federation-Suzuki Cup.