Public Transport in Accra: Moving Towards a Better Regulation of paratransit?

Within the framework of the Ghana Urban Mobility and Accessibility Project (GUMAP), funded by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and implemented by the Ghanaian Ministry of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development (MLGDRD), Transitec has been mandated to implement activities related to the improvement of urban mobility in Greater Accra. One of the main objectives is to promote better regulation of the sector to improve public transport services.

The capital of Ghana (Accra), according to the World Bank has a GDP of 3 billion dollars and is developing very rapidly according to a radio-concentric model. However, in this metropolis of 4.5 million inhabitants, there is no mass transport system. The public transport network is based primarily on "trotro" minibuses operated by small-scale operators.

Within the framework of the Ghana Urban Mobility and Accessibility Project (GUMAP), financed by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and implemented by the Ghanaian Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD), Transitec has been mandated to implement a number of activities related to the improvement of urban mobility in Greater Accra (urban mobility planning, regulation of public transport, traffic and parking management, data collection, etc.) In March 2021, two technical assistances were launched to recommend improvements in the regulation of the sector, in order to improve the public transport services:

  • First, a mapping of the trotro network - Transitec has partnered with Transport for Cairo (TfC), which is using a mobile application and on-board surveyors to collect spatial data in real time. This project is a follow-up to the Accra Mobile project carried out in 2016 by the city of Accra and Transitec (with AFD funding), which enabled the mapping of approximately 300 trotro routes. Training of heads of transport department from the municipalities in the Greater Accra area will also ensure that the data collected is regularly updated, enabling the municipalities to better regulate the supply of public transport services and improve upon its quality.

 

  • The second assistance involves the study of the performance of the trotro, taxi and okada (mototaxi) network, with a view to propose possible improvements such as a shift to scheduled services (as opposed to the current fill-and-go system). This will involve the collection of socio-economic data on all actors in the sector (drivers, collectors, feeders, porters, vendors, maintenance agents, mechanics, spare parts vendors, etc.) as well as on users (origin-destination, travel time). This information will serve as a basis for the development of a pilot programme for the transition to scheduled operation. For this study, Transitec has partnered with Organisation Development Africa (ODA) and the Global Labor Institute (GLI). A similar project was carried out in 2019 by the City of Cape Town (South Africa) with the support of ODA and Transitec (see video).

These two technical assistances will lead to a third study on the renewal of the trotro fleet, which aims to introduce higher capacity fleets of vehicles that are safer, less fuel consuming and less polluting.

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