Reducing traffic congestion through ride sharing in Bangladesh: a case study of Dhaka City
AuthorMollah, Md Lokman Hossain
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Adequate transport infrastructure and services are prerequisite for sustainable economic and social development. Ride Sharing Services is the innovation of private sector worldwide. It has been introduced in Dhaka by the recent years. Ride Sharing Services Policy, 2017 has been activated in March of 2018 in Bangladesh. The study aims to assess the contribution of Ride Sharing Services (RSS) for reducing traffic congestion through lessening private vehicles in Dhaka city and serving people by providing safe, comfortable and less costly transport services or mass transportation. The main policies regarding transport sector are National Integrated Multimodal Transport Policy, 2013; Revised Strategic transport Plan, 2015; Ride Sharing Policy, 2017; etc. Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA) is the regulatory body of road transport sector in the country. Coordination and planning among road transport stakeholders in the greater Dhaka area is done by the Dhaka Transport Coordination Authority (DTCA). Both of them are working under the Road Transport and Highway Division of the Ministry of Road Transport and Bridges. Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA) is responsible for registration of the motor vehicles and issuing licenses for drivers, approval of route permit, implementing the Motor Vehicles Ordinance 1983, after repeal of it; the Road Transport Act 2018 effected from 01 November 2019, Ride Sharing Policy 2017, Taxicab Policy, CNG run three-wheeler auto-rickshaw Policy and other related laws, rules, regulations, etc. Relevant literatures were reviewed in this regard but the information about the number of reductions of private vehicles due to commencement of Ride Sharing Services in Dhaka city could not be found. This is important to find the necessary information regarding reducing traffic congestion and convenience of people due to the operation of Ride Sharing Services in Dhaka city. In this case study, qualitative data collection approach has been followed under inductive method. Information mainly collected through Key Informant Interviews (KII), Focus Group Discussion (FGD) and secondary data for trend analysis. Ride Sharing Services (RSS) companies have created the opportunity of making the travelling services easier, safe, time saving and comfortable without creating burden on the road by increasing more private cars in Dhaka. They have utilized the existing facilities, vehicles population by connecting the vehicle owner and driver by using their mobile apps. Users are being satisfied by the opportunity of safe, comfortable, time saving and cost effective service provided by ride sharing service provider companies through their mobile apps and existing vehicles of the Dhaka city. Traffic congestion may not be reduced very shortly due to construction works of MRT, BRT, Elevated Expressway and other works in Dhaka but it would not be further aggravated by this Ride Sharing Services.