A new fleet of public buses will be urgently put into operation with an electronic ticketing system to help control Vientiane’s rising congestion problem.
Public buses have the potential to ease the city’s traffic congestion and reduce accidents, the Mayor of Vientiane, Mr Soukanh Mahalath, and representatives of the Ministry of Public Works and Transport agreed at a meeting in Vientiane yesterday.
Students at the National University of Laos will be given electronic transit cards to use on their bus route to encourage them to catch public transport and trial the system before it is extended to the rest of the city.
Mr Soukanh said improving transport in Vientiane was a way to reduce traffic jams and confusion on the roads.
The transit card system would make the process of paying bus fares smoother and faster, he said. The government of Japan has recently given Vientiane 42 buses to improve transportation in the city.
The new fleet will play an important role in easing congestion and reducing carbon emissions by decreasing the number of motorbikes and cars on the road as more people opt to use public transport.
Traffic jams have become worse as Vientiane has expanded and the population has increased.
The buses will run from Khuadin Market bus station to the National University of Laos’ Dongdok campus, the Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge, Mittaphab Hospital and to Dondaeng, Dongkhamxang, Tha-ngone, Nongtaeng and Thongpong villages.
Since 1988, Japan has supported the improvement of public transport in Laos and in the year 2000 it provided funding for 56new buses.
Vientiane Public Transport Enterprise (VPTE) is responsible for about 60 buses in the capital.
Source: Vientiane Times