Stuck in Traffic

Transport sector analysts say the government’s latest strategy to introduce air-conditioned double-decker buses and add 2000 forty-seater buses will not help ease the urban traffic problem. Transport sector analysts say the government’s latest strategy to introduce air-conditioned double-decker buses and add 2000 forty-seater buses will not help ease the urban traffic problem. Proposed fleet increases and new services are barely adequate to bridge the gaps in the present commuter service, say transport sector analysts.

Private vehicle users as a result are expected to continue to drive in and out of urban areas, with additional bus services only adding to further congestion.

Already urban roads are over crowded, with National Transport Commission (NTC) studies showing close to 50 percent use, against about half that on rural roads.

In addition the country is unable to adequately fund road maintenance, leaving most roads in un-motorable conditions.

The Central Bank in its 2004 Annual Report said the improvement in quality is hindered by the lack of funds for road expansion and maintenance, a general issue associated with Sri Lanka’s poor budgetary conditions.

Mean