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SAFEGE - A Bus Rapid Transit System for Dakar, Senegal

SAFEGE - A Bus Rapid Transit System for Dakar, Senegal


Country: SENEGAL


Beneficiary: SAFEGE/SCE

Client: CETUD

In-country partners:

French partners: SCE

Project status: Transport network concept, feasibility study. 

Financing: World Bank

The project in brief:

Severe traffic congestion in Dakar, the capital of Senegal, prevents the efficient operation of the buses and minibuses forming the city’s public transport system. Against this background, SAFEGE conducted a comprehensive assessment of traffic flows as a basis for the development of a strategic mobility plan. The study looked at the desirability of a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system and the feasibility of building one or two priority BRT lines.


In Dakar, a city of three million people, the management of the buses and minibuses forming the public transport system is problematic. These modes of transport serve most mobility needs but are less than efficient when confronted with congested roads. Dakar’s sole dedicated right-of-way- transit system is the Dakar–Thiès rail line which covers only a small part of the conurbation and shares its ageing infrastructure with a busy freight rail service serving the port of Dakar. How the transport system is organised however is key to how local economic activity is organised (given that transport ensures access to stores and markets and is an important source of jobs) and an integral part of the way people live in the city.


Against this background and amid spiralling population growth and rapid urbanisation, the need for an efficient public transport system tailored to local requirements was critical.


The project was accordingly required to meet two major objectives:

-        to solve the problem of traffic congestion in Dakar and offer an attractive and efficient alternative in terms of public transport;

-        to develop an urban development plan with the public transport system at its centre, and create a transport system embedded in the city’s economic, social and environmental fabric.


Key project features and highlights: CETUD, the body with responsibility for coordinating urban transport in Dakar appointed a SAFEGE/SCE consortium to carry out the engineering studies for a dedicated-lane Bus Rapid Transit system and the associated stations, to serve as a pilot system for the rest of the Dakar area and possibly other African metropolises. The studies included:


-        surveys on existing public transport routes in the Dakar area (December 2013) and analysis of the survey findings;

-        definition of the makeup and layout of the BRT network by 2025  (identification of urban corridors to be served by BRT lines) with elements of evaluation;

-        basic design and preparation of tender documents, with a view to the formulation of recommendations on possible scenarios for a first phase of works involving the construction of a pilot line.


Special features of the French offering: The study draws on French know-how in embedding transport systems in their urban setting in a manner that is both sensitive to the streetscape and to local economic and social conditions. The project is underpinned by an efficient policy of urban development tailored to local conditions.

Find out more

SAFEGE website: