In a bid to ease traffic congestion, authorities in Jinja have unveiled plans to establish two dedicated taxi parks.
The City’s Senior Physical Planner, Mr. Charles Nampendho, revealed the strategy, detailing the creation of a taxi park at Mailo Mbili for vehicles from Iganga highway and another at Amber Court roundabout for those from the Kampala-Jinja highway.
Notably, the existing city center taxi park will undergo transformation into a customer parking space for Jinja Central Market.
Mr. Nampendho clarified that taxis entering the city will be permitted passage without stopping, streamlining traffic flow.
The proposal also includes constructing 200 lock-ups around the new taxi parks to accommodate approximately 500 businesses.
However, challenges arise as Mr. Khalid Muyingo, Chairperson of Jinja Taxi Park Operators Association, expressed concerns about the availability of free land.
Many potentially suitable locations, including Mailo Mbili and Amber Court, have been sold, making land acquisition a complex issue.
Muyingo suggested allowing shoppers from Jinja Central Market to park on streets, generating revenue through street parking fees.
Meanwhile, Mr. Henry Mugimba, Chairperson of Jinja Central Market, highlighted potential adverse effects on traders if the taxi park is relocated.
As most customers are passengers from various districts, shifting the taxi park could impact business negatively.
Similarly, Mr. Eria Musobya, Chairperson of Jinja Boda Boda Riders Association, raised concerns about potential income reduction if the taxi park moves closer to the highway.
This move comes as Jinja, attaining city status in July 2020, expands its infrastructure to accommodate the annexed areas, fulfilling prerequisites for city operations.