Canal Express

Colombos waterways could soon be a hive of activity with a Canadian firm studying its potential as an alternative to road transport.
The Canadian firm recently concluded a preliminary study and has now signed an agreement with the Urban Development Authority for a detailed study. rn

rnResults of the study are due in six months and will cover all canal systems in the greater Colombo area.rn

rnUDA officials say it is too early to estimate the cost of the project, but added that private sector investment would be sought to initiate the canal transport system. rn

rnThe move adheres to UDAs plans to investigate alternate mass transport systems, as solutions to Colombos traffic problems. rn

rnRecently the UDA also invited private sector interest to construct and operate a mass rapid transit system. rn

rnEarly UDA estimates put costs for the project at over US$ 500 million, while at least four firms showing interest in the project in 2002. rn

rnThe mass transport system will stretch along Galle R