Kampala’s non-motorised transport corridor, which was unveiled last year by Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA), has been invaded by street vendors, taxis and boda boda operators, who congest the lanes.
The 2km corridor, which stretches from Entebbe Road via Luwum Street down to Namirembe Road and Berkley (Bakuli) Junction, was constructed for pedestrians and bicycle riders with a specified lane for taxis.
Vehicles would only be allowed at certain hours (late night and very early morning between 10pm to 6am) for delivery of goods.
However, a spot-check by Daily Monitor found that the corridor has been misused.
Some of the green spaces between the lanes have also been occupied.
According to the design of the corridor, the two directional flow of vehicles from Berkeley (Bakuli) to Jaguar bus terminal are allowed.
For the section between Jaguar bus terminal and Pride Theatre, vehicle movement is restricted to cyclists and The section Pride Theatre to Mackay Road (New Taxi Park) and Kisenyi Road is single lane.
From New Taxi Park to Ben Kiwanuka Street and Burton Street, vehicles are restricted while between Burton Street and Entebbe Road, vehicles are allowed in one direction from Entebbe Road.
Traffic on Ben Kiwanuka Street and Burton Street is supposed to cross the non-motorised transport route but with signalised control at Ben Kiwanuka Junction.
Pedestrians and cyclists, who spoke to Daily Monitor on Monday were unhappy with the current status of the corridor and implored KCCA to crack the whip on offenders.
Mr Deogracious Lubwama, a cyclist, said the non-motorised transport corridor could soon lose its objective if city authorities do not impose penalties on the defiant taxi drivers and boda boda operators.
“We now have to compete with boda bodas on lanes which were specifically designed for cyclists and pedestrians and this has caused a lot of confusion,” he said.
Ms Swabrah Nansubuga, a pedestrian, said: “Let KCCA come clean on this matter because the whole idea of a non-motorised corridor has now lost meaning. Pedestrians need to be protected and have breathing space because taxis and boda bodas drive badly.”
Our efforts to speak to the KCCA deputy director of Roads Management, Mr Jacob Byamukama, were futile as he was to be reported in a meeting.
The KCCA manager for Transport, Planning and Management, Mr Joel Wasswa, did not answer our repeated calls by press time.
The chairperson of Uganda Transporters Development Agency, Mr Mustapha Mayambala, attributed the illegal parking of taxis on streets to the stalled works on the Old Taxi Park.
He said most taxi operators lack space and end up parking on the non-motorised transport corridors.
KCCA started upgrading the Old Taxi Park in May last year and promised to hand it over by August 2020.
Asked when the Old Taxi Park would be ready for use, the KCCA manager of public and corporate affairs, Mr Daniel Nuwabiine, said technocrats would visit the park on Thursday [tomorrow] to assess the progress of the works and determine when the facility will be open to the public.
The Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) manager of public and corporate affairs, Mr Daniel Nuwabiine, said KCCA is engaging motorists to leave the corridor.
“We have been engaging motorists on this matter but since they have not listened to our plea, we will move to enforce the rules. The culprits will face the law. As for street vendors, we have started relocating them to our markets in the city because the conditions there are now fair following a presidential directive to have all those markets managed by KCCA, not private investors,” he said.