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November 9, 2009

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Home » Metro » Public Services

New buses hit the road

SHANGHAI is opening six new community bus routes in three outlying districts this week in an effort to blunt the illegal operation of black cabs.

More community buses will follow this first batch of openings to help residents in densely populated neighborhoods get to nearby Metro stations, supermarkets, schools and hospitals.

The city has several community bus lines running in the Pudong New Area, Minhang and Baoshan districts.

But those routes are too few to meet locals' transportation needs. And with bus operators often reluctant to offer a service that they fear will run a deficit, the opportunities have broadened for the illegal cab business.

"The existence of illegal cabs reflects the lack of public transportation vehicles," Sun Jianping, director of the city's transport and port bureau, told reporters.

Two new community bus lines are to open in Baoshan District today and three will open in Pudong tomorrow. A new line in Minhang is expected to open on Friday.

The short-route buses will travel several stops covering the last few kilometers between residents' homes and Metro stations.

The fare will only cost 1 yuan (15 US cents), half the standard ticket price on downtown buses.

Government subsidies and fines collected from the illegal-taxi crackdown will help pay for the community buses.


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