Sunday December 05, 2021

Yellow Line BRT consultancy contract awarded

September 03, 2021
Yellow Line BRT consultancy contract awarded

After delays of eight long years, the Sindh government has finally issued the consultancy tender of the Yellow Line Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) to connect Korangi with Numaish to an international firm, Dar Al-Handasah, and the National Engineering Services Pakistan (NESPAK).

The provincial government, through Sindh Mass Transit Authority (SMTA) and the Transport and Mass Transit Department (TMTD), and with the financial support of the World Bank, is implementing the Karachi Mobility Project, which is the Yellow Line BRT Corridor, to improve mobility, accessibility and safety along the corridor.

The corridor is 21 kilometers long from Dawood Chowrangi to Numaish having two bus depots, 28 stations, two flyovers, and nine underpasses, with expected ridership of 300,000 people per day.

The bus fleet proposed for the Yellow BRT Corridor is 268 diesel-hybrid vehicles. The cost of the project is $438.9 million. The starting point of the project will be Dawood Chowrangi in Landhi and it will stretch till Regal Chowk, Saddar, via Korangi Road, FTC, Sharae Quaideen, Numaish and People's Secretariat Chowrangi. The Jam Sadiq Ali Bridge at Korangi will be widened to eight lanes, out of which two lanes in the centre will be dedicated to the BRT line, while the rest of the six lanes will be for mixed traffic.

The Yellow Line project is part of the six bus rapid transit corridors that were proposed by the Japan International Cooperation Agency to improve the traffic situation in Karachi. The Karachi Mass Transit Cell (KMTC) had invited international tenders for the Yellow Line in the year 2014 and the cell received around 21 bids from local and foreign firms, but the project remained on paper. Minister for Transport & Mass Transit Department Awais Qadir Shah announced that the Karachi Mobility Project was another step forward to address the urban transport issues of the Karachi City. He further announced that due consideration had been given to uplift the entire BRT corridor from façade to façade in order to ensure a systematic solution to urban infrastructure issues.

To implement the project, the Sindh Mass Transit Authority has awarded a contract to Dar-al-Handasah (Lead international Firm) joint venture NESPAK for consulting services for the preparation of a detailed design, procurement support and construction supervision of the Karachi Mobility Project – Yellow Line BRT Corridor.

In 2015, a Chinese company, China Urban Elected Company, was finally given the tender, but the concessional agreement couldn’t be inked. The area coordinator of Dar-al-Handasah Rabah and Project Director Karachi Mobility Project, Imran Bhatti, signed the contract on Thursday. “This is a vital step forward for the development of the project and the people of Karachi will soon witness a bus rapid transit system, which will provide a safe and reliable transport system,” said Bhatti.

The lead-firm Dar-al-Handasah founded in 1956 is a privately-owned international consulting company active in engineering, architecture, planning, environmental consulting, project and construction management, facilities management, and economics. NESPAK was established in 1973 as a private limited company by the Government of Pakistan.

According to a press statement from the Karachi Mobility Project, the project will benefit approximately 700,000 people and improve mobility, transit travel times, and safety, reliability and passenger facilities along the corridor. It would address the transportation needs of expansive population, employment growth, transportation and economic development initiatives.