Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Bus routes on their way to Phnom Penh

Bus routes on their way to Phnom Penh

Bus routes on their way to Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh might have a bus service by early next year after City Hall named two bus companies to start running routes through the capital.

Lim Andre, chief executive officer of Global (Cambodia) Trade Development, who along with City Trans Cambodia beat a handful of competitors to win the licence, said his company plans to employ a fleet of 90 buses along four lines around Phnom Penh and from Takhmao, Kandal province.

“If the first operation is successful, our firm will expand another two lines operation,” he said.

Passengers could expect to pay about 1,300 riel for a bus fare along one route, Lim said, or buy a monthly ticket for US$11 with unlimited use.

The absence of a public transport system in a growing city of 1.5 million people has been the subject of much debate.

In 2001, the Japan International Cooperation Agency developed an urban transport master plan for Phnom Penh with a target year set for 2015. During this project, a citywide bus service was tried but struggled to compete with the established and affordable moto trade.

The entire master plan was eventually dropped, citing fast-changing traffic conditions and growth in the city’s suburban residential areas. In April the beginnings of another urban transport plan for Phnom Penh were made with a JICA research team and the government.

Long Dimanche, spokesman for Phnom Penh City Hall, said yesterday that the decision to tender the capital’s bus system to the chosen bus companies was made after consultation with research firm SYstar.

“Putting public buses in place will help ease traffic congestion, reduce costs and reduce the number of cars in the street,” Dimanche said.

The exact number of vehicles and bus routes, as well as a timeframe, had yet to be finalised, Dimanche said, but he expected the service to start in early 2013.

But introducing buses won’t necessarily ease traffic congestion, Ching Chhom Mony, Dean of Architecture and Urbanism at the Royal University of Fine Arts, said.

Bus stop locations had to be looked at to ensure frequently stopping buses didn’t add to traffic problems. A comprehensive network, however, would help people overcome their reliance on motos, he said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Kim Sarom and Rosa Ellen at [email protected]

MOST VIEWED

  • EU parliament’s 13-point vote to decide on possible sanctions

    The European Parliament is due to vote on Thursday on a 13-point resolution on Cambodia – which includes a call for the treason charges against bailed opposition leader Kem Sokha to be dropped – a threat that could see the EU enforce a range of sanctions against

  • Government hits back at threats to pull EBA, suspend UN seat

    The spokesman for the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) has said the government is in no way concerned after the European Parliament gave it three months to reverse what it called the “systematic repression of the political opposition”. Ignoring the ultimatum could mean facing

  • Chinese influx pushing locals, Westerners out of Preah Sihanouk

    Some within the Kingdom’s tourism industry have speculated that the recent influx of Chinese visitors may hinder domestic tourism as the price of accommodations in the coastal city of Sihanoukville continues to rise. Preah Sihanouk province, which has become a hotbed for Chinese investment

  • Sar Kheng: Sokha requested security

    Interior Minister Sar Kheng on Sunday revealed the story behind the transfer of former opposition party leader Kem Sokha from Trapaing Phlong prison in Tbong Khmum province to his house in the capital. Speaking at the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) headquarters in Prey