|The first bus rapid transit (BRT) line in HCM City will be ready by mid-2018 and will be linked with the city's proposed metro network.— File Photo
HCM CITY (VNS)— The first bus rapid transit (BRT) line in HCM City will be ready by mid-2018 and will be linked with the city's proposed metro network, according to the city Urban-Civil Works Construction Investment Management Authority (UCCI).
Luong Minh Phuc, head of the UCCI, said the BRT line 1, a dedicated lane on the Vo Van Kiet- Mai Chi Tho Highway, would be the first of six under a 2012-20 transport development plan.
The 28.6-kilometre route would cost US$155.85 million, with $142.25 million coming from the World Bank, Phuc told a workshop held in the city yesterday.
The People's Committee has assigned the UCCI to execute the project, he said, and the agency would scale up the BRT model and develop the remaining lines with support from the World Bank and others.
The first line, which is expected to use compressed natural gas (CNG), will run through the districts of Binh Chanh, Binh Tan, 6, 5, 1, and 2, with start at the proposed new Mien Tay Bus Station in Binh Chanh and end at the Cat Lai intersection.
A depot will be built in Thu Thiem besides 31 stops, four terminals, and two transit stations for transfer to rail and other routes. There will be 30 buses operating on the line.
"The project, which is undergoing a feasibility study, will improve traffic capacity and reduce travel time on east-west routes," Phuc said.
"It will also help cut down energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions as well as the number of accidents."
Ajay Kumar, lead transport economist of the World Bank, said: "BRT is potentially cost-effective and affordable."
Its performance, passenger attractiveness, and capacity are comparable to rail equivalents, he said, adding that it could enable sustainable land development.
Work is set to begin next year.
The 24km BRT line 2 is planned along Nguyen Van Linh Street from the new Mien Tay terminal to Phu My bridge.
The 19km line 3 will run along Ring Road 2 from An Suong intersection to the new Mien Tay terminal.
The 14.5km line 4 will be from Kha Van Can Street to Chien Thang Park along the Tan Son Nhat-Binh Loi Ring Road.
The 8.7km line 5 will be from Thoai Ngoc Hau Street to Nguyen Van Linh Street, and the 8.5km line 6 will be along Quang Trung Street.
BRT models are also proposed for Ha Noi and Da Nang. —VNS