Transforming Paratransit in Africa's congested Cities: An ICT- enabled Integrated Demand Responsive Transport (iDRT) approach
IST-Africa 2020 Conference Proceedings Miriam Cunningham and Paul Cunningham (Eds) IST-Africa Institute and IIMC
Developing cities in Africa and the Global South are grappling with the problem of inadequate public transport provision. The informal privately-run paratransit system consisting of mini- and micro-buses, shared taxis (jitneys), motorcycle and bicycle taxis has seen substantial growth since the early nineties. This loosely-regulated transport system is associated with many challenges that include congestion, high crash rates, high levels of noise and air pollution. In this paper we describe the origin and current status of this structurally unique paratransit system. We then reviewed the transport master plans of four East African cities (Dar es Salaam, Kampala, Kigali, and Nairobi) and identify remaining planning gaps. We found that all the four cities reviewed lacked satisfactory plans for multi-modal public transport integration, demand responsiveness, and ICT integration which are essential to every modern and efficient public transport system. We then proposed a conceptual organised public transport system (ICT-enabled iDRT). We described how it could be adapted for a highly congested city like Kampala in order transform its existing chaotic paratransit system into an efficient public transport system that could make commuters happier and safer, reduce costs and considerably reduce pollution
This is a conference paper on developing cities in Africa and the Global South are grappling with the problem of inadequate public transport provision.
Paratransit, Demand responsive transport, Minibus taxi - matatu, Informal public transport, Public transport - East Africa