The newly Dhaka Water Taxi service at Hatirjheel has gained an immense popularity in just one month of its inauguration that the authority concerned to add more vessels to their fleet. This aquatic transport system is getting popularity to ease traveling and greater connectivity now.
Although the water taxi project was aimed to be fully implemented by 2010, it was deferred several times before December 16 inauguration to meet the deadline set by the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council.
Previously in 2013, a water bus service was inaugurated in the circular waterways surrounding Dhaka by the Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation. However, because of its inconsistent service, that service failed to gain popularity. The water bus service covers 29km in river routes and has 12 water buses in operation.
Now, the first water taxi service has been launched in Hatirjheel to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the Victory Day on December 16.
Minister of Home Affairs Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal inaugurated the taxi service at Merul-Badda terminal, while Rajuk Chairman M Bazlul Karim Chaudhury, Hatirjheel project officials, Bangladesh Army Engineering Corps and representatives of the water taxi Karim Group attended the ceremony.
At present, the water taxi service operates with four vessels with plans for expansion in the next three months said the authorities concerned.
According to a source, ‘A huge passenger has convinced us that we need more vessels and so we are getting 10 taxis within three months.’
To meet the extended demand of this route, as part of a larger project, another set of water taxis are scheduled to be introduced to the Gulshan-Banani-Baridhara Lake very soon.
Each water taxi has the capacity to carry 30 passengers. The fare is Tk 25 for a single trip. At present, every day the four water taxis make a round trip every 15 minutes starting from 6:30 am to 10:30 pm.