The government has identified heavy road congestion as one of the major issues facing Colombo, Deputy Minister of Public Enterprise Development Eran Wickramaratne said today during the Colombo Mayor’s Conference in Colombo.
Wickramaratne said that 500,000 vehicles entering Colombo daily is neither eco-friendly nor an efficient means of getting from home to work or school.
“Time is wasted and people arrive late at offices and classrooms, tired and frustrated. The main railway station, Fort Railway station, hasn’t changed since Independence in 1948,” he said.
Wickramaratne said that the government is working towards a public transport system that takes over from private transport.
“As seen in Bangkok, it is necessary for the government to explore investing metro systems, which allows for speedy journeys for those living in the outstations. This expands access to human capital for employers, increasing job possibilities for those in the job market. We know that in some Asian cities you use smart cards as an integrated system to pay for transportation. Why can this not be introduced in Colombo over the next 5-year period? According to DNV GL, in America, Uber and Waze (Google) are sharing anonymized travel data with the City of Boston to apply smart data to traffic decongestion,” he said. (Colombo Gazette)