Five new 46-seater Volvo buses were yesterday (Oct. 17) handed over to Montego Bay Metro Limited, which will boost public transport service to residents of the city and its environs.
Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing, Hon. Dr. Morais Guy, presented the keys to Chairman of the bus company, Gordon Brown, at a ceremony held at the bus depot in Bogue.
Valued at approximately $ 34 million, the new vehicles, which are equipped with security cameras, are to augment the existing fleet of eight, which serves three routes.
Minister Guy said the goal of the Government is to provide a sustainable and reliable transportation system to serve Jamaicans all over the island.
“I will also emphasise that the development of our roads and public transportation system by this administration is inextricably linked to our plans for both rural and urban development. We are of the firm belief that the commuting experience of students, workers, farmers and tourist must be positively enhanced,” he stated.
Minister Guy argued that the efficient management of the transportation sector can provide tremendous economic and social gains to the country, through indirect and direct employment, as well as induce development, which ultimately leads to wealth creation and growth.
He stated that while the three buses provided to Montego Bay Metro will not address all the needs, he pledged that the Ministry “will be doing everything within it powers to continue to improve the lot of the transportation sector in western Jamaica”.
Mayor of Montego Bay, Councillor Glendon Harris, said the presentation of the buses fits in with his long-term vision to reduce traffic congestion on the roads and to make the city more environmentally-friendly.
Mr. Brown, in his remarks, gave his commitment that the new units will be put to good use, as the company discharges its duty to the travelling public of Montego Bay and its environs.
Montego Bay Metro was set up in 1997 as a private entity to manage the operations of a dedicated school bus service in Montego Bay, with a municipal bus service introduced in 2000. The three routes served are: Greenwood to City Centre; Sandy Bay to City Centre; and Cambridge to City Centre.