Ethiopia last week signed an agreement with France to see the latter help undertake construction of the first pilot lane of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) B2 pilot corridor in Addis. The signing was done by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development of Ethiopia (MOFED) and French Development Agency in the ministry’s office on Thursday last week.
France will provide financial and technical assistance for the construction and launching of operations of the pilot lane, which will be part of the larger public transport networking strategy by the Addis Ababa City Administration (AACA). The project will help in connecting Light Rail Way Transit (LRT), Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) and regular bus lines in a short term. These will also be hooked to the subway on a long term. Mr. Christian Yoka, AFD Regional Manager represented the French Development Agency at the signing ceremony.
The 16 km pilot lane for the Bus Rapid Transit system will cross the Light Railway Transit (LRT) at two separate locations and will pass Regional Bus Station, Merkato and Kera. The civil works and supply of related equipment is set to be implemented starting mid-2016. The project, whose international procurement for engineering studies, support to Tenders and Works supervision was launched on February 2015, is planned for commissioning in September 2017.
“The project helps to build and operate the first pilot lane of BRT on a segregated corridor running from Wingate to Gofa Gebriel and mixed traffic from Gofa Gebreil to Jemo, within the framework it’s multimodal and integrated transportation system,” Said H.E Ato Ahemed Shide, State Minister, Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, at the signing ceremony. The Bus Rapid Transit is a high-quality-bus-based transit system that provides dedicated lanes and buses and is therefore fast, safe, comfortable and cost-effective.
The lane construction project will be implemented by Addis Ababa City Administration while Addis Ababa Transport Bureau (AARTB) will be the implementing agency.
Earlier this month, the French Agency for Development signed an agreement that would see it provide US$9.5m loan to join European Union Trust’s fund of about US$8m loan in order to revamp Ethiopia’s geothermal energy sector.