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Neoliberalizing Infrastructure And Its Discontents: The Bus Rapid Transit Project In Dar Es Salaam

Matteo Rizzo
Published 2018 · Geography

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This chapter focuses on Dar es Salaam Rapid Transit (DART), a Bus Rapid Transit project (BRT) and the new face of public transport in Dar es Salaam since operations started in 2016. A PPP funded by the World Bank, DART aimed to transform public transport through large-scale infrastructural work, the introduction of new buses, and phasing out pre-existing public transport providers from the city’s main public transport routes. The chapter challenges the presentation of BRT as the ‘win–win’ solution to tackling the crisis of public transport in developing countries. A contextualized political economy of DART highlights why the project proceeded so slowly (implementation began in 2002), documenting the capacity of some Tanzanian actors to resist. Tensions over the displacement of existing paratransit operators by foreign investors, the inclusion of the existing public transport workforce, employment destruction, affordability of the new service, and their management by the government are a window into ‘actually existing neoliberalism’ in Tanzania.
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