Sustainable Bus Rapid Transit initiatives in India: The role of decisive leadership and strong institutions

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

infrastructure - traffic signals, mode - bus, mode - bus rapid transit, organisation - governance, organisation - management, place - asia, policy - sustainable


BRT, Public transport, Urban infrastructure, Leadership and institutions, Sustainability, JnNURM


The Government of India’s Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission is instrumental in providing policy, financial, and institutional support to meet the growing needs of urban agglomerations (UAs). In addition to discussing the recently implemented Delhi Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system and the Indore Busway project, which served to renew the nation’s interest in public transport, this work presents a case brief from three UAs for which the author prepared detailed project reports on the BRT systems. This paper highlights the role of leadership and institutions in the successful completion of feasibility studies (Visakhapatnam and Vijayawada), the process delays (Hyderabad), planned implementation (Visakhapatnam), full-scale operationalization (Indore), and the problems caused by quick deployment (Delhi), the last of which has led to a national debate on BRT viability in India. In conclusion, this work brings to the fore the felt need for a decisive leadership and strong institutions in evolving sustainable public transport solutions.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


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