Swedish firm, Roam Limited, has ventured into the public transport sector by launching one of a kind mass transit bus dubbed the Roam Rapid.
According to a press statement dated Saturday, August 20, the buses will be part of a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system being implemented in Nairobi County.
The electric buses have a capacity of 90 passengers allowing ample room and efficient boarding and disembarking of commuters with both seating and standing areas.
They also feature priority seats catering for different age groups and commuters, including the elderly and those with limited mobility. Other characteristics include extended legroom, designated areas for wheelchairs, and a low-floor entry for easy access.
The electric buses have zero tailpipe emissions and low noise pollution.
Roam buses which will officially start plying different routes on Wednesday, August 24, have a range that enables the operators to run their buses for a full day without worrying about charging.
"It also has the ability to fully charge in less than 2 hours through DC charging ports. Giving operators full flexibility to decide their charging and operating schedule, either fully charging at night or including a brief midday charge to top up the battery," their statement read in part.
The implementation of the BRT system by the Swedish firm comes just days after Nairobi Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (Namata) acting director-general Francis Gitau stated that a similar plan by the government will be completed by August 2022.
According to NAMATA, the trial phase will start in December 2022 before the full launch. The buses were to be introduced in June 2022, but the slow pace of the construction process derailed the plan.
"We have already embarked on the importation of buses and operational lease for the testing phase," Gitau stated during an interview with NTV.
"Once we have homogeneity of services, NAMATA through the Ministry of Transport will develop a fare structure based on households and affordability," he added.
This after the earlier announced price of Ksh100 was met by opposition of Nairobi residents who explained that the price was double the normal fare charged on Thika Road.