Towards a strategy for the operation and management of public transport services in Nakuru Town.
Gachango, Patrick Waweru
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Public transportation is an essential service and a necessary input in the development process of a town/city and the nation at large. For towns/cities in developing countries like Nakuru, the role of public transport is even much more given that majority of people cannot afford private ca and the only next cheap motorized transport is public transport. However, public transport in Nakuru is facing various problems ( internal and external) which make it ineffective and inefficient thus leading to deterioration of the level of services it provides to commuters. There are several causes of urban public transport problems in Nakuru town. Mainly, these include: inadequate and lack of proper maintenance of the transport infrastructural facilities; concentration of economic, employment, and other land use activities in central area 0 the town resulting in huge traffic that is increasingly becoming unmanageable or unsustainable; skewe supply of public transport services; lack of adequate traffic management and disorganized operations of the mode of public transport, The main focus of the this thesis is on the operations and It Ianagernent of paratransit transport services within Nakuru. A lot of emphasis has been p.aced on the levels 0 services provided which are basically composed of density of route network, period of operation, and frequency of operation. A background of the evolution of public transport in Nakuru town has been discussed to show how public transport agencies/operators have responded to the growing demand. The study, subsequently concentrates on matatu ( the only mode of public transport) and looks at the various aspects of matati. industry/operations which are discussed before summarising the problems revealed by the study. (v) To appreciate the discussions and analyses in this study, a number of aspects and characteristics of the study area have also been discussed. Possible solutions to the public transport problems in Nakuru town were given in form of policy recommendations based on the findings. In conclusion, the study stresses that to solve the public transport problems in akuru town, concerted effort is required among all those concerned; the government, the MeN, the operators at d the general public. The study finds that Matatu is here to stay and will continue to offer public transport services for many years to come since it is cost effective th. 11 publicly owned bus companies or the conventional buses therefore evelY effort should be made to incorporate it .n ie public transport system. A deliberate effort should be made to consoiidate minibuses and taxis into cooperative type organizations which would make for better returns and improved services 0 the riders, since the expanding self-managed firm experiences less cost increase due to managerial diseconomies of scale than private and public companies. This will in the long run offer effective and efficient public transport services to residents.