Operational Characteristics of Para-transit Modes in Akure, Nigeria
The operational characteristics of para-transit modes in Akure metropolis have been appraised with a view to designing a well coordinated system. Data on the cogent indices of metering operations, attributes of operators and patrons of para-transit modes were collected in-situ at the mode terminals and garages. This was corroborated with the use of information cards, which were completed under interviewers’ supervision. This work provides data base on operational characteristics of para–transit modes in Akure, a developing capital city in Nigeria, which could be applied to similar cities. Some of the striking findings from the data analysis are that operators of motorcycles (okada) and tricycle (keke NAPEP) are mostly inexperienced, hence, the reason why they are the most ‘vulnerable’. It was also discovered that operators of para-transit modes in the study area are mainly semi literate, some of them had been either an apprentice in one skill or the other like bricklaying, welding and auto mechanics. Also, only few operators of para-transit modes would like to transfer the business to their children, thus making their sustainability suspect. The results of this study could form a basis for the design of schedules for para- transit operations in Akure metropolis. Such schedule should eliminate motorcycle and tricycle from the main trunk or express way. Rather, they are to serve as feeders to main trunk by conveying commuters from the suburbs to the nearest terminals where they can make use of other modes. It has been recommended that a systematic program of reverting back to the use of conventional buses should be evolved to cater for increasing demand.
Key words: Para-transit, Operational-characteristics, Operators, Patrons, Akure.