From Mini bus to Metro Bus – new face of Islamabad’s public transport

Now travel from Pindi to Islamabad in cool Metro Bus

The wait is finally over! After months of chaos and dust on the roads of Islamabad, the much-awaited buses have finally arrived in the city, bringing some kind relief for the daily commuters and utterly changing the scene of transportation in the city.

The old, sloppy mini buses of Islamabad have been replaced by new, shiny, air-conditioned and wifi-ed Metro Buses – offering a convenient, comfy and low-cost travel for the residents of Islamabad and Rawalpindi.

The project was built in 14 months — six months longer than planned — at a cost of 44.84 billion rupees, and will use buses from Turkey.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif inaugurated Islamabad’s new Metro Bus Project, with a speech to a packed Convention Centre on Thursday. PM was elated at the completion of the million-rupee transport project, as he smiled and made light-hearted jokes aimed at his brother — Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif.

“People are saying this [project] looks like we are in another country… this is not another country. This is a changing Pakistan!” the premier said.

He said the Metro Bus is going to be a major convenience for commuters travelling between the two cities. Nawaz gave examples of students and government officers who would have to spend thousands each month for their commute between the cities. “Instead of changing two or three routes, they can now reach their destination in 15-20 minutes.”

Nawaz also gave hope to the citizens of Karachi saying that Greenline Rapid Transport System will soon be launched in the metropolis.

Rawalpindi-Islamabad Metro project, is the second Metro Bus scheme in Pakistan, after the one that opened under Shahbaz Sharif’s guidance in Lahore in 2013.

Rawalpindi-Islamabad Metro project information by Islamabad Scene

The public transport system has been constructed as per international standards and offers a hassle and heat free as economical travel for the residents of twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi.

The 23-kilometre line, where 68 air-conditioned buses will carry an estimated 135,000 passengers a day along exclusive, signal-free lanes, links the neat, leafy capital with its sprawling twin city Rawalpindi.

Officials say a mass transit system is indispensable for any city the size of Islamabad-Rawalpindi, and the existing set-up had made commuting an agonising experiencing for people, particularly women and the elderly.

However, critics have termed the Metro Bus project as “wasteful,” saying the priority should be given to spending on education, health and the environment. Some experts and civil society members believe that spending 48 billion on the infrastructure is a futile task since introduction of the buses alone could have solved the woes of daily commuters.Twin cities residents have mostly welcomed the project as it would make travel easier and cheaper for those who had to commute on sporadic network of minibuses and vans.

Twin cities residents have mostly welcomed the project as it would make travel easier and cheaper for those who had to commute on sporadic network of minibuses and vans.

Visit our Facebook album for more photos of Metro Bus Project.


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