The Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) plans to integrate a digital platform in the new matatu termini across the city.
The electronic system will be used in the bus stops outside the central business district (CBD) to keep commuters informed on the time last mile buses will be available at the different pick up stages.
The system will also keep matatu operators informed, NMS Director of Transport and Public Works Michael Ochieng said.
“This system keeps you informed and, when you have information, you make correct decisions on what time you are planning to do your business, what time to leave your office, when to go home, and so on. That is what we want to integrate.”
Mr Ochieng explained that bus rapid transport (BRT) vehicles will be available for commuters who prefer not to walk from the termini to the city centre and vice-versa.
The Transport and Public Works director said a date has not been set for when matatus will stop accessing the Nairobi CBD.
Ochieng said a date will be announced after “the project is done and we have rehearsed with the matatu operators on how they are going to operate in various sections of the roads”.
The first of the termini, the Green Park terminus serving matatus plying Ngong Road and Lang’ata Road routes, will be ready for use in a fortnight.
“It has taken us about a month to complete 80 per cent of Green Park, so for the remaining bit, we may be through in two weeks,” said the NMS transport director.
At the same time, Ochieng allayed concerns that there could be congestion at the various matatu stages. He explained that the termini will strictly be for picking up and dropping passengers with a clear routine to ensure constant mobility.
“The terminuses will not be parking space. They will act as pick up and drop off points with each vehicle having five minutes to drop and another five to pick up passengers,” he said.