Infrastructure projects are often subject to political aspirations. But when they are not realised as promised or their costs multiply over the years, the projects turn into public controversies. After a while, the aspirations, promises and controversies settle as the infrastructure system becomes an integral part of the environment and society.
Dar es Salaam Bus Rapid Transit is such a project. It was planned to improve urban transport by gradually replacing minibuses in Tanzania’s largest city. Various challenges, like unclear construction plans, residents’ protests and unexpected costs, led to several years of delay in constructing and implementing the transport system. Planning started in the early 2000s and it began to operate in 2016.
One out of six construction phases is complete, offering more than 300,000 trips daily. The second phase is under construction and funding has been secured for its third to fifth phases. Phase six is still under discussion.