AfricaPress-Tanzania: ONE of the largest bus terminals in the East Africa region opened its doors yesterday at Nzuguni area—some 20km from Dodoma city centre en-route to Dar es Salaam.
The new state-of-the-art bus terminal at the heart of Tanzania will also cater for buses plying between Tanzania and East African countries.
The terminal, which has combined many bus stations previously spread across the city into one location, has been under construction since 2018 by local engineers and will bring together the services of 200 upcountry buses, 600 medium-sized passenger buses and an additional 300 taxis.
The Dodoma City Council said they expect to include a section of motorcyclists and 25-units of food vendors.
Dodoma City Council Director Godwin Kunambi told the Regional Commissioner, Dr Binilith Mahenge, during his official tour that the authorities had also considered making it a tourist attraction area, including names of the big five wildlife in naming the four-existing passenger lounges.
Both lounges have a combined capacity to accommodate 1200 sitting passengers.
“The terminal has also a VIP lounge considering that we have buses that offer such services,” he said, adding that the terminal was also designed as a shopping mall with special areas for gift shops.
Passengers immediately lauded President John Magufuli administration for investing in such a mega structure that would transform the surface transport in the country.
Mr Kunambi said the terminal has a capacity to provide service to at least 6,000 passengers at a time.
However, service providers were quick to say the terminal has not been given much public attention.
Shabiby Bus agents told the Regional Commissioner that most passengers are not aware of the new terminal but insisted the structure is better than the old terminal where agents and passengers were subject to dust.
At least 24bn/- was spent for the project, sitting on a 50 acres’ plot.
Mr Kunambi said the bus terminal had been launched alongside other major projects in Dodoma as part of the 89bn/- budget issued by President John Magufuli.
He said the fund was channelled into construction of 26.7 km-long tarmac road (over 30bn), about 14bn/- was used in the construction of Job Ndugai complex market. Other spendings including a 5.9bn/- released for the truck terminal, an additional 2.9bn/- for the Chinangari recreational park.
“All the services are available. The city has contracted Suma-JKT for cleaning, security and levy collections … we expect to start construction of a hotel in August this year and this terminal will be linked to the express passenger train terminal,” added the Director.
Dodoma District Commissioner Patrobas Katambi noted that the development was a commendable job by the fifth-phase government which is committed to supporting the livelihood of the people in the country.
Dr Mahenge, giving his address said he was moved with the public turn-up at the terminal. The new terminal has marked the abolishment of all other bus stations that were individually operated by bus owners.