ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi Wednesday approved, in principle, a proposal for the establishment for Capital Mass Transit Authority for the purpose of planning, operation and maintenance of Metro Bus Service that would ply between the new Islamabad International Airport and main residential areas of the federal capital/Rawalpindi.

The decision was taken during a meeting held at Prime Minister’s office on Islamabad Metro Bus Project which is being established to cater to the transportation requirements of the residents of the twin cities after the completion of New Islamabad International Airport, said a press release issued from the Prime Minister House on Wednesday.

The meeting was attended by Minister of State for Communication Mr. Muhammad Junaid Anwaar Chaudhry, Secretary to the Prime Minister, Chairman CDA Mr. Ansar Sheikh, Managing Director of the Punjab Mass Transit Authority Sibtain Fazal-e-Haleem, Chairman NHA Shahid Ashraf Tarar, Secretary Fianance  Shahid Mehmood and other senior officials.

The Prime Minister directed that necessary legislation to this effect be initiated and expertise of Punjab Mass Transit Authority be utilized for establishment of the statutory body within minimum possible timeframe.

The Prime Minister also directed Chairman NHA to ensure timely completion of the infrastructure and allied works on the new Islamabad Airport Link road.

According to sources, although the major partners in this important project are Capital Development Authority and the Punjab Metrobus Authority, but due to financial constraints with the federal as well as provincial government of the Punjab, therefore, Chinese firm has been engaged in this project.

The project will be a facility for the commuters of the federal capital and Rawalpindi, as they will provide a modern transport system for them.

The sources said under this Mass Transit Authority, besides the Metro Bus Service, there will be Light Rail Transit (LTR) and Metro Rail Transit (MRT) will also be included and there are reports that Chinese companies will be asked to provide the funds and technical expertise for the completion of these projects.

The experts said that there is huge traffic volume on the roads of federal capital and there is estimated of over 210,000 vehicles are on the road and there is increase on daily basis in the traffic volume.

According to details, some of the work on this project is already underway by a leading Chinese company which has been given the task to link the present link of Metro Bus Service from Peshawar More to the newly constructed Islamabad International Airport for providing a safe, clean and effective transport system to the people who will use this airport. There are reports that the newly constructed airport, which is already in final shape and hopefully it will be operational very soon after its inauguration at the start of next year.