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  • The public transportation system within the Kingston Metropolitan Transport Region (KMTR) has received a boost with the addition of 27 new buses to the Jamaica Urban Transit Company’s (JUTC) fleet.
  • Of note is that one of the buses will be deployed to be used in the Montego Bay Metropolitan region.
  • The buses were handed over during a ceremony held at the JUTC corporate office in Twickenham Park, Spanish Town, on May 7.

The public transportation system within the Kingston Metropolitan Transport Region (KMTR) has received a boost with the addition of 27 new buses to the Jamaica Urban Transit Company’s (JUTC) fleet.

Of note is that one of the buses will be deployed to be used in the Montego Bay Metropolitan region.

The buses were handed over during a ceremony held at the JUTC corporate office in Twickenham Park, Spanish Town, on May 7.

In his address, Managing Director at the JUTC, Colin Campbell, noted that the additional buses have put the number in the fleet of the JUTC to 569 units.

He pointed out that 16 of the buses will be added to the company’s city service, while the remaining 10 will be added to the premium service.

“Those buses will significantly add to our capacity to provide charter services as well as special premium services on our suburban routes into the business district of Kingston, whether uptown or downtown,” Mr. Campbell said.

He added that the new units will add needed capacity to the JUTC’s new brand, to be known as ‘JUTC Tours’.

“It is not a service to be feared by anyone. We are not in the market to compete with taxis in Ocho Rios or tour operators. What we are doing here is to provide a service for the people of the KMTR where they can hop on a JUTC bus from our main transport centre to visit institutions where they sometimes only see in the news or hear about on the radio,” the Managing Director said.

Mr. Campbell stated that for the last quarter, the company achieved a daily run out rate of 99 per cent with 442 units going out per day, instead of 445.

“We expect that in the next quarter there should be no missteps. In addition, the constant renewing of our fleet has enabled us to move our fuel consumption from 1.49 litres per kilometre to 1.69, except on the Mandela routes which is now at 1.78, because the throughput is much greater than any other corridor in Jamaica,” he said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Campbell pointed out that illegal transportation continues to “choke” the legitimate transport business in Jamaica.

He noted that there is a serious threat to public order, “east of the city in downtown Kingston and Half-Way Tree.”

“I will be writing to the Commissioner of Police, to point out new threats which we see, as there are serious national security and public order threats to public transport in Jamaica, if we do not act swiftly,” Mr. Campbell said.

For his part, Minister of Transport, Works and Housing, Dr. The Hon. Omar Davies, also lamented the high level of public disorder within the KMTR.

“I often pull up beside a taxi driver and say ‘why did you do that,’ and what strikes me is that they will hail you, but are totally unaware of doing anything wrong. We have to make a transition from that to one of order,” Dr. Davies said.

The Minister emphasised that an efficient transport system is inextricably linked to public order.