A fleet of 17 new high-tech, low-emission buses to help reduce congestion and pollution in the capital has been rolled out in the Capital from Monday. The 25-seater vehicles will run through the route from Gongabu to Sinamangal, replacing aging 26 microbuses and 35 tempos.
The initiative is a part of the ADB Kathmandu Sustainable Urban Transport Project, which is promoting the use of low-emission vehicles and helping improve mass transport in the valley.
“ADB is pleased to work closely with the Department of Transport Management on this project to provide the city with a more efficient urban transport system,” said ADB Country Director for Nepal, Mukhtor Khamudkhanov in a press note.
The owners of the microbuses and the tempos have formed a private company that now runs the bus service. The capital for this initiative was provided by the government-managed Town Development Fund financed by ADB, grants from the Global Environment Facility, and equity financing from the company itself.
“The incentive for the owners who had to shut down the aging microbus and tempo service in the designated routes and operate the newer and cleaner buses is that they are now shareholders of the new company and will get regular dividends,” according to Project Director Ananta Acharya.
Passengers can also use a card to pay their fare, while the buses themselves are disabled-friendly, it is said. The total cost of the project is 22.37 million US dollar, with the government contributing 7.9 million US dollar.