TANZANIA Railways Corporation (TRC) is looking for a joint partner to run the Dar es Salaam City Commuter Train in a bid to better the service further.
TRC said in tender notice yesterday that they have a fund, set aside by the government, to cover eligible payment under the contract of joint venture (JV) for developing and operating the train. “TRC…is looking for a developer and operator in a form of joint venture…on existing railway network,” TRC said.
TRC said the tender winner will develop and rehabilitate the existing railway stations and platforms, providing suitable rolling stocks and operate the commuter train services.
“The main objective of the project is to look for a partner [for a] joint venture with TRC on better operation of the city commuter trains so as to reduce congestion within the city,” TRC said.
The tender is closed at the end of next month and eligible bidders will be selected in accordance to international tendering procedures. Though TRC proposes the partner to acquire, operate and maintain, but left a room for alternative operating system.
“However,” TRC said, “the partner is also allowed to come up with a better alternative of equipment to be used in order to serve intend purpose.”
The City Train better known as ‘Treni ya Mwakyembe’ has two routes one from main station at Kamata to Pugu via Gongolamboto and Kamata to Ubungo Maziwa through Tabata and Mabibo.
The Kamata-Ubungo route has 12 kilometer while Kamata-Pugu line has 20 kilometer. The first journey of Treni ya Mwakyembe was in October 2012.
That runs on 1,000 mm gauge tracks. Report showed that TRC city train was operating at a loss due to engines and wagons which are not cost efficient for short journeys.
The train also operates only during rush hours in the morning and evening leaving a vacuum of no service in midday and late evening.
However, there are a two ‘Treni ya Mwakyembe’ in Dar one operates by TRC and the other by Tanzania Zambia Railway Authority (Tazara). TRC currently charges 600/- per trip while Tazara 500/-.