Cir­cu­lar rail­way sur­vey to help shape com­muter ex­pe­ri­ence in the futre

The Myanmar Times - - Business - AYE NYEIN WIN ayenyein­win@mm­times.com

IN ORDER to gauge com­muter per­cep­tions and help shape the fu­ture de­sign of Yangon’s cir­cu­lar rail­way, Myanma Rail­ways and the Ja­pan In­ter­na­tional Co­op­er­a­tion Agency (JICA) con­ducted a mass sur­vey last week, ask­ing pas­sen­gers about the clean­li­ness and over­all ser­vice of their train ex­pe­ri­ence.

“We want to know all about the con­di­tions of cir­cu­lar trains, so we need to sur­vey the com­muters,” said U Kyaw Soe Linn, an as­sis­tant to the gen­eral man­ager at the op­er­at­ing depart­ment of Myanma Rail­ways. “We es­pe­cially want to know how the ser­vice ex­pe­ri­ence is for the com­muters, whether the trains are clean or not, whether it is a con­ve­nient ride for com­muters and how of­ten peo­ple are us­ing the trains.”

Most of the trains are not con­sid­ered very clean by pas­sen­gers, while the ser­vice has a rep­u­ta­tion for lack­ing or­derly tick­et­ing and seat­ing pro­cesses. Air con­di­tioned car­riages do not ex­ist on the daily com­mute.

“Frankly, the trains are not so good but com­muters need to take the train more than ever,” said Ma Mar Lar, a pas­sen­ger on her daily train com­mute. “Some pas­sen­gers are eat­ing while rid­ing the train and they don’t dis­pose of their rub­bish prop­erly, while some com­muters don’t care about other pas­sen­gers and play their mu­sic re­ally loudly.”

At present, over 70,000 peo­ple are us­ing the cir­cu­lar train ev­ery day. Myanma Rail­ways hopes that will in­crease to 263,000 with the planned up­grades tar­geted for com­ple­tion in 2019.

‘Some com­muters don’t care about other pas­sen­gers and play their mu­sic re­ally loudly.’

Ma Mar Lar Train pas­sen­ger

Hop­ing to speed up the ser­vice and re­duce the city’s con­ges­tion by en­cour­ag­ing more train pas­sen­gers, the rail­way re­fur­bish­ment and new trains are be­ing funded in part with a US$200 mil­lion loan from Ja­pan.

At present, com­muters have long waits for a trains that Myanma Rail­ways is hop­ing to re­duce to 10 to 12 min­utes.

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