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RTA broadens trial run of ‘Bus on Demand’ service

By Wam

The Roads and Transport Authority, RTA, in Dubai will widen the scope of the trial operation of its "Bus on Demand" service, to include Dubai Media City from 15th April, which will run free of charge for three months.

Regarding the trial, Ahmed Bahrozyan, CEO of the RTA’s Public Transport Agency, said, "This service is part of the RTA’s initiatives, under the Dubai Future Accelerators. The RTA has decided to widen the scope of the service during its current trial phase, starting from Sunday, 15th April, to assess the public’s response in Dubai Media City, which has several areas of interest, such as Nakheel Harbour and Tower Station, the American University of Dubai, Dubai Commercial Bank and Aurora Tower, as well as Reuters Agency, CNN Station, Arabia and MBC Channels, Samsung, SAP, ITP Media, Concord Towers, Jumeirah Palm Tram Station, Tecom Business Parks, MasterCard, IBM, Oracle, Google, Microsoft, and the Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank."

"We anticipate a positive response to the service from public transport users, especially as its extension will cover important areas and Dubai Metro and Tram stations. It will therefore contribute to integrating the local public transport network, and facilitate the mobility of commuters to safely travel to their destinations," Bahrozyan added.

"The RTA recently added the geospatial data of Al Barsha 1 and 2, Al Warqaa 3 and 4, and Dubai Media City to the MVMANT app. Residents and workers in these three communities, who will be served during the trial run of the free service, can now identify their locations and track buses until their arrival," Bahrozyan stressed.

"This smart response to the needs of public transport users is based on the idea of linking certain localities with mini-public buses through a smart app. The app will enable commuters to assess their routes from the start to their destination, book their preferred seats, and pay their fares. The service also offers a creative solution for the ‘First/Last Mile’ journey between the homes of commuters and the nearest public transport station," Bahrozyan continued.

"During the service’s free trial operation in the three communities, it will be possible to assess its efficiency and accessibility to commuters, as well as its response times and the journey times to destinations. A questionnaire will also be conducted at metro stations for residents and workers in Al Barsha, Al Warqaa and Dubai Media City, to collect their feedback, ideas and views about the service, before moving to the full operation phase. The survey will enable us to analyse their need for a safe and smooth transportation system," he further added.

The RTA also commissioned a site survey and opinion poll before the launch of the initiative, which included over 1,750 samples, with 6 percent of respondents being males and 37 percent being females. About 5 percent of respondents were aged between 25 and 34 years.

The service targets three categories, including workers (23 percent), occupational specialists (15 percent), and retail and services businesses (62 percent).

The service will be offered through the MVMANT smart app, which is available on Google Play and Apple Stores on smartphones and devices.