ROURKELA: The local administration plans to launch 30 new city buses under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) on nine routes in the city next month. The city bus service under rapid transit system aims at providing better public transport facilities at reasonable cost.
After elevation of the Rourkela Municipality to Rourkela Municipal Corporation (RMC) last year, the Housing and Urban Development Department had decided to launch the service by end of December, 2014. For the purpose, Sundargarh Urban Transport Trust (SUTT) was formed with Sundargarh Collector and Rourkela ADM being made its Chairman and CEO respectively.
The service was launched on February 15 by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. Initially, six buses were introduced on three routes towards Rajgangpur and Birmitrapur towns and Bisra block.
Minimum fare was fixed at Rs 7 and for maximum distance upto 35 km, it was Rs 47. With drop in flow of passengers, the fares were revised in first week of March with the minimum fare fixed at Rs 5.
Meanwhile, the SUTT has approved a proposal to include Rourkela SP and Rourkela Regional Transport Officer as members. Rourkela ADM K Sudershan Chakravorty said as of now, the average occupancy is about 45 per cent and they are trying to find out the deficiencies from the trial run of six city buses. He said after arrival of 30 new buses, nine new routes would be introduced with flexibility of timings and destinations.