There was confusion on Tuesday morning as Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) conducted a test run at the nearly complete Green Park Bus terminus.
All public service vehicles operating from the Nairobi Railway Station Frontage were allowed drop passengers at the new terminus between 6am and and 9am but were not allowed to pick passengers.
Passengers spoke to the Nation said they were caught unawares.
There were no connecting buses and passengers had to walk from the terminus to their various destinations. There wasa huge traffic snarl-up that stretched from Haile Selassie roundabout to Community area.
“I have a child and I have to go to Parklands, how will I get there?” a frustrated passenger posed.
Another city resident said the move is good a initiative but officials should have provided connecting buses especially for pregnant women, the old and the handicapped.
“Has NMS considered such cases before telling people to walk?” he posed.
NMS Transport Director Engineer Michael Ochieng while addressing the media during the test run that it is the perception because of change, but as time goes by, people will get used to it as the distance has not changed much.
"We have begun testing and this is a signal that the terminus has commenced operations,' he said.
More test runs
“They will be an interface session where the park will be operating temporarily before the closure of the other one. The test run started today and it will continue into the better part of the week and into next week before transitioning into full operation,” he added.
He said that NMS wants to ensure that it is safe, works well and addresses the concerns of commuters and matatu operators to give them better service.
“We want people in the middle class, who are the majority, to start using public service vehicles and that is why we have designed this terminus.”
The terminus, which has been under construction since last year, has had its launch pushed back several times.
He added that, NMS did the test run so that they can have a clear picture of what would happen when the Nairobi matatu ban is effected.
“We are looking to check the safety features even for the disabled and the physically challenged and others who may not be able to make it to town. We have also organized with Kenya Railways that will provide commuter buses to town,” he said.
The Green Park Bus Terminus, a project of the NMS is aimed at decongesting the city.
Public Service Vehicles (PSVs) plying Ngong Road, Lang'ata Road (Kawangware, Kikuyu, Kibera, Lang'ata, Rongai, Kiserian) will terminate at the Green Park bus terminus, formerly known as Railways Club.
In November last year, NMS said the terminus is among the newly designated termini that they have constructed. “NMS as part of the Nairobi Integrated Urban Development master plan and Decongestion Strategy under which PSVs will terminate outside the CBD.”
The bus park will serve as both a drop-off and pick-up point.