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BMTC's encouraging mini bus talk - good going Mr Parwez

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Amidst all the press that BMTC is getting recently, one thing that caught attention was talk of mini buses, shuttles and feeder routes. As we all know, feeder plans, and solid execution of first/last mile connects can help increase usage of BMTC as well as (future) metro.

Here are the bytes I have picked up (read in print, so don't have links handy, will search and add later)

  • In a report that quoted Sudhir Krishna of MoUD (he is pretty familiar with Bangalore, an ex BMRDA cheif), it is mentioned that BMTC is procuring 32 seater mini buses
  • In a report on the new Big-trunk (new name for Big10), number mentioned was I think 40 minibuses, and number of ruotes 110.

Based on my brief interactions with Mr Parwez, he is a backer of the mini bus concept. This contrasts with what we have heard from prior BMTC MDs who spoke of operational as well as procurement hurdles regarding running shuttles

  • They wanted to operate shuttles with just 1 staff (driver). 2 staff on minibus was supposedly not making the business case (could be true, I am not criticizing this thought)
  • For single staff operation, they would want a minibus equipment where the entry door is in the very front, so that the driver can deal with commuter as they come in.
  • But then, with a single, most likely single narrow door upfront, mini bus would have to spend a lot of time to pick up and drop passengers.

All of above make sense in some way. So I am very very curious to see how the mini bus plans are moving now. We are perhaps looking at 2 staff on every bus (driver, conductor) and wide door, in the center, to keep things simple.

How the routes would be planned is a separate subject. Keenly looking forward to BMTC publishing the list of its 110 mini bus routes. From what we have seen in news reports, the routes should be around the Big-trunks. But what is not clear is if there is any concept of "change hubs". These could be the points where mini buses would connect with Trunk routes, and should need enhanced bus stops with more space, and printed information at least on feeder routes and timings.

Look forward to seeing more information on BMTC's renewed love for feeders / minibuses.


silkboard's picture

pics from older discussions

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A pic from this old post from Naveen where we had discussed the subject. a pic as well of the type BMTC is using today:

Pic of a minibus with single door in the front:

Vasanth's picture

Introduce Smart Card for Driver Only Buses

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It is better for BMTC to introduce a smart card and GPS based amount deductor. Passenger has to swipe in while entering and swipe out (something like Metro contact less cards), based on the distance travelled, amount should be deducted.

This reduces the work of the driver and he could concentrate more on driving.

silkboard's picture

Minibus specs - in this doc

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JNNURM's City Bus booklet has the specs and some pictures of minibuses: (here is the pdf)

srinidhi's picture

low floor?

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As with the longer bus..i guess it will be important to have bus with low flooring and wide doors to enable faster round trips. I dont see any of the indian models now adhereing to such there a way to involve the manufacturers to build something like that as part of JNNURM?

silkboard's picture

quick get-in/get-out linked with ticketing method?

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Sri - we can perhaps write to MoUD. perhaps do some "research" on shuttle usage preferences of 50-60 people in some areas of Bengaluru, and then send a report send to MoUD. May be after we get Cycle Day started :)

But also, easy get in get out design goes hand in hand with smart ticketing, isn't it. Since these are last mile shuttles (may not be true BTW, because these buses may instead get used as extension route to connect village sin the peripheral area), ride times would be low, and easier it is for people to get in and get out, harder it will be for TCs. Right?

Why not make last mile shuttle rides require a special "annual local pass". And make buying a local pass mandatory along with property tax payment, and with new car registration. That would fund a bit for the abusers of the system.

Then, driver himself can just ask for the "local pass" to be shown when you board the bus.

srinidhi's picture

free transfers?

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yes having a bus pass should help hop in-out of these shuttles faster..the other thing was having a ticket for the trunk routes should automatically give public free access to these shuttles.,.

this is already in place today where a person travelling to mysore from KBS can get to Mysore rd satellite bus stand with just one its a matter of implementing it on these bmtc shuttles

ramesh_mbabu's picture

All the concerns of transfers/unified ticketing etc. can be

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addressed at . Not sure how long does it take for full fledged implementation of the same.


pathykv's picture

Unified Ticketing

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What about Metro/BMTC unified ticketing?

No mention in the tender.

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