November 29, 2017 at 9:02 am #59
People have been advocating for the BRT (Bus Rapid Transport) in Lebanon for a long time. We’ve been documenting the latest discussions as part of our involvement in focus groups in a social and environmental impact assessment led by ELARD.
Well, the “The Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) System Between Tabarja and Beirut and Feeders Buses Services” project assessment report is finally out! Go to the CDR website to check it out — it’s very long, but we’re curious to hear your opinions! What do you think?January 8, 2018 at 4:57 am #114
I’m not sure you’re going to like my resonse, but I have severe reservstions on a lot of issues here.
First I don’t think the plan covers all the areas that the statics are used to support. Congested roads and traffic is not just caused by the areas covered (even when including Doura and Mazraa). The areas covered are replicated only by the bus line number 15 coastal line and some areas that overlap with bus number 6. The statistics on traffic and riders coming from Northen region are including the vans and buses coming from Tripoli. A big chunk of the riders currently going to Tripoli, Anfeh, Chakka, Halet, Batroun, and even Byblos are completely neglected by the project. Has anyone actually collected statistics on how many riders go from Tabarja to Charles El Helou versus those coming from Tripoli and the other aforementioned areas to Cornish El Mazraa and Cola?
Also another thing: how many riders actually ask to be dropped off at Charles El Helou versus Cornish El Mazraa? You’re asking a majority of the riders to use 2 buses to get to where they want instead of one. That’s a big hassle that’s going to discourage riders from using the system. Especially those of lower to middle class workers, which also brings up the question of tarrifs.
If the total tarrif to take 2 buses instead of one does not match the current tarrif, no rider from the lower class will be able to afford it (maybe even some middle class people). That would be a form of segregation where your newly formed system will cater the needs of only upper middle class people (high class people will rarely if ever even consider using a bus here in Lebanon, so let’s be a bit realistic). The project would, in my opinion, fall flat on its face if it does so cause the bulk of the riders are low to middle class workers.
And another thing: when your bus lanes don’t even come near access points to nearby refugee camps (even Cornish El Mazraa is a far cry), you can’t say that the system will be helping out refugees be it Syrian or Palestenian. Especially when the majority are arriving from Tripoli and the upper areas, not Tabarja.
This project needs to do a refocus group and run field statistics before going forth with it.
Sorry for being such a Debbie Downer.