The Lanka Private Bus Owners’ Association (LPBOA) has sought approval to import 100 'low- floor' Air Conditioned buses to operate in Colombo and its suburbs as a solution to the traffic congestion, its Chairman Gemunu Wijeyaratne said.
He told Daily Mirror that arrangements to implement the service was in progress. "After receiving the buses, the LPBOA hopes to assign 10 per cent of buses to operate on bus lanes and the Colombo suburbs while removing the current buses," he said.
"There will be no removal of existing drivers and conductors, but they will be assigned to the new buses. The Government approval to import the buses is pending. All buses will be from China with the capability of carrying 80 passengers. Each bus is ten-meter long and worth Rs.12 to 13 million," he said.
"Once the low- floor buses are deployed, we hope many people will get used to it instead of using their own vehicles and thereby minimise traffic congestion. Those buses will operate in Colombo roads similar to those operated continually in other countries," he said.
"The buses will be operated aiming the office-goers in the morning and evening. Those buses will operate even at night to facilitate those who work till 11.00 p.m. Eventually, the buses will be used as a shuttle service by implementing the 'park and ride service' once again," Mr Wijeyaratne said.
He said there will be no conductors to issue tickets and the system will operate electronically.
The new electronic ticket issuing service will enable people to use their bank credit or debit cards as the travel card to make payments for the tickets, he added. (Chaturanga Samarawickrama)