Sunday Observer Online


Sunday, 03 July 2016





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Government Gazette

Megapolis project faces further delays

Modernizing public transport was an urgent need:

Disagreements among the key stakeholders and internal squabbles are blocking the progress of the much-awaited Megapolis project, the Business Observer learns.

Despite Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s keen interest to expedite the process, things are not happening, an official close to the project said.

The main objectives of the megapolis project include creating jobs, spread industries and strengthening public service across the province, thereby giving people the opportunity to comfortably live and work in their native areas without travelling to Colombo for their daily chores.

Introducing modern and convenient rail and bus services within the megapolis and comfortable transport services to connect the megapolis hub with the rest of the country will be the first concern the expert team has recommended as a first priority.

Transport experts said that modernizing public transport was an urgent need to take cars off the roads, particularly during morning and evening rush hours.

They had proposed giving priority to a relatively lower cost Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system where modern buses travel on dedicated lanes, offering fast, comfortable services which can be implemented more quickly than rail.

However, the implementation of megapolis transport plan got delayed due to disagreements among government officials and the experts. Some of the experts opted to skip discussions at a latter point.

“The roads in Colombo and the suburbs are getting increasingly jammed with vehicles,” said one transport expert.

The Cabinet of Ministers on April 25, 2015 approved the proposal to set up the Western Region Megapolis Plan (WRMPP) with the objective of transforming the Western Province into a vibrant megapolis by 2030 and make it the most vibrant and livable cosmopolitan smart city in South Asia.

The project will also outline instructions for all future development projects in an effort to maintain the uniformity and sustainability of all projects.


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