Commuters in Barbados are clamouring for a more reliable bus service.
Chairman of the Transport Authority Abdul Pandor made this disclosure last night while addressing owners and operators of private service vehicles (PSV) at Combermere School, Waterford, St Michael.
Pandor told his audience that a recent study which was commissioned by the Transport Authority found that the main concern of commuters was the lack of a reliable scheduled bus service both in the public and private transport systems.
The chairman said that in an effort to respond to those concerns the Transport Authority met with stakeholders, including the Transport Board, the private sector and insurance companies to hear their views and decided to pilot an integrated bus schedule on three routes beginning next month.
“I believe that given a chance this integration between the two sectors can be a learning curve for the betterment of the transport system. We hope that it can be the precursor for the future improvement of transportation in Barbados,” Pandor told the PSV owners and operators.
The chairman added that ideally the Transport Authority wanted more Barbadians to use public transportation in order to reduce congestion on the island’s roads.
The Government-owned and private sector vehicles make a combined 40 million passenger trips a year and generate $240 million, according to the Transport Authority.
Meantime, Transport Authority director Alex Linton revealed that Smart Card technology will be introduced for the start of the integrated service and that satellite monitoring systems will be installed to monitor the movement of units across the island.
Linton added that in addition to the use of modern technology on board the units, there will be a single marketing of the service and a rebranding of public transport.
The pilot project now is scheduled to be rolled out on December 1, on the Sturges, Edey Village and the Martins Bay routes.