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First Bus Rapid Transit lane in Addis Ababa / Didier Gentilhomme AFD
Since 2010, AFD has been supporting the Addis Ababa municipality in the improvement and implementation of its public transport provision. Two soft loans amounting to 85 million euros were extended between December 2014 and December 2015 for the construction of the Bus Rapid Transit Lane (BRT).

Ethiopia has an urban population growth of about 4% a year. The country is facing a significant challenge: by 2020, 30% of Ethiopians are expected to live in cities, against 18% in 2012.
This is particularly true in the capital Addis Ababa, where the population was estimated at 2.7 million people in 2007 and at around 4 million in 2012. Forecasts
estimate that it will reach 7 million inhabitants by 2022 and 13 million by 2030.

The current urban growth is putting an increased pressure on urban mobility in Addis Ababa. The municipality has consequently made the planning, the improving provision and the public transport service’s management one of its priorities and has requested AFD’s support.

Indeed, faced with rapid urbanization, mass public transport takes on a strategic role: it no longer simply aims to meet demand by seeking to adapt to urban sprawl but also to precede and structure it upstream through an integrated and sustainable approach.


In terms of infrastructure, this project provides for the construction of a 16 km-long bus lane (with 12 km on a BRT line), including the required interchanges and traffic management systems, as well as shelters. It should start operating in 2019.

On the institutional side, AFD is continuing to support the future single transport regulation authority. Optimization measures for the operating plans for bus services and integration of independent transport (taxis and minibuses, accounting for 80% of transport provision) are being studied (real-time information of passengers, station extensions, etc.).

Communication and consultation actions are planned for sector actors and the public.


This project aims to meet urgent needs in terms of urban transport and effective mass transit network development. The bus line is expected to have a capacity of 5,400 passengers per hour in each direction and to reach more than 400,000 residents.

The social and economic impacts are planned to be especially high as the bus lane will go through a rather poor and densely-populated area, which is experiencing considerable development.

Project start date
Addis Ababa
85 000 000
Financing amount
Addis Ababa Municipality