3. I am open to counterviews on this point but I think the existing non AC buses should also be a part of the BRTS lane instead of running on the main roads. I will go as far as suggesting that even the Ambulances/Emergency service vehicles should be using BRTS lane.
We Indorians are proud people. Proud of our city ofcourse. Ask a true indori, what is so special about the city and he can give you atleast 10 things ranging from how it is the only city in India that has both IIM and IIT to the well known food street ‘sarafa’ that serves some of the best street food you’ll ever have, from the videos of Rajiv Nema to Pasharvnath Paan Corner, from Treasure Island that is awarded as the best designed mall of India to the mighty ‘chappan dukaan’, from the brand new international airport terminal or the new award winning Cricket stadium to the world famous combination of poha-jalebi and sev ofcourse (by the way, for an indori, sev is as essential food component as salt!). The latest addition to this list is called the iBus.
iBus is Indore’s answer to city transport. Although there is an existing bus service, multiple cab services as well as auto rickshaws easily available, what makes iBus stand out is the BRTS (Bus Rapid Transport System). BRTS basically provides a separate lane (or the corridor as they call it) exclusively for the iBus thus making it far more effective than any other existing city transport options.
When I took a ride in the coveted iBus during my last Indore visit in June, I knew I was going to blog about it 🙂 Below is a list of stuff that I really liked and some improvement suggestions,
1. The bus stop! Very well designed, feels comfortable and looks innovative. You are suppose to buy a ticket when you enter the bus stop itself. So if you think you have half an hour to kill and want to spend it sitting at the iBus stop, sorry but you need to find some other place as only passengers are allowed inside.
2. Again since you are buying the ticket to the destination at the bus stop itself there is no need for the conductor to struggle to reach to the last person of the bus for issuing the ticket. The ticketing is fabulous.
3. The entry in the bus is very smooth. When a bus arrives, it stops so close to the automatic magnetic gates that you don’t need to lift your roller bags, you can simply drag them inside the bus. There are two gates, one for entry and one for exit which avoids the single gate rush.
4. There are women employees as well working at the bus stop which is really good to see. Indore is yet to match Bangalore where one can easily find women TCs in the bus. But still more employment and more power to women is always a welcome change.
Areas of improvement
1. There is a small cabin for the person who hands out the tickets when you enter the bus stop but the person chooses to sit outside the cabin. I saw this on almost all the bus stops. If there is a cabin made for you, why do you want to sit outside?
2. I think the plan is to have air-conditioned bus stops as the entire structure is enclosed but as of now there is no A/C.
4. A dustbin and drinking water facility at every bus stop can be added. I am sure people won’t mind paying if you can serve some hot indori poha-jalebi at the bus stops 🙂
Lastly, I must say the iBus ride is super fast and an experience you will enjoy especially when you see cars stuck in the traffic and people on the bikes making fun of traffic rules on the main roads while the iBus easily sails through its exclusive BRTS lane.