Passenger minibuses will continue to operate in Yerevan as an interim  measure

ArmInfo. Old Passenger  minibuses in Yerevan will be replaced not by buses, but simply by new minibuses, as was the case before. David  Khazhakyan, a member of the opposition faction, the only ...

Passenger minibuses will continue to operate in Yerevan as an interim  measure
ArmInfo. Old Passenger <GAZelle> minibuses in Yerevan will be replaced not by buses, but simply by new <GAZelle> minibuses, as was the case before. David  Khazhakyan, a member of the <Luys> opposition faction, the only  representative of the Bright Armenia party in the Council of Elders  of the Metropolitan Municipality made a similar statement during a  press conference on August 31. In this vein, he referred to the 5-year program for the development  of the capital's economy, which, according to the new project of the  transport network, excludes the operation of "GAZelle> minibuses as  public transport, which should be replaced by buses 18m., 12m. and  7.5-8.5 m. length. In particular, the new transport network was  designed by WYG, whose obligations have already been covered.   According to Khazhakyan, the new transport network provides for the  purchase of 900 new vehicles. "In April this year, the mayor announced that a tender had been  announced for the purchase of 100 buses with 12-meter length.   However, the tender did not take place, there are no winners. And  instead of 100 buses, new <GAZelle> minibuses will be ordered," said  a member of the <Luys> faction. As a confirmation of his words,  Khazhakyan cited the technical parameters noted in the tender of the  Munici[pality, which almost fully correspond to the parameters of the  <GAZelle> minibuses that have long been familiar to us.  The only  difference will be the convenience for people with disabilities.   "Instead of 100 new <GAZelle> minibuses, 70-80 medium size buses  could be purchased," he complained. According to Khazhakyan, the  solution to this issue may be the involvement of private investors  who would be engaged in the process of purchasing new buses. "Yes, it  will take time, but if we do not start now, I have no idea what our  future will be," the MP stressed. In addition, he drew attention to the fact that according to the  decision of the Armenian government, <GAZelle> minibuses, whose  service life exceeds 15 years, cannot be used in the transport  network of the republic. According to Khazhakyan, there are 450 such  route taxis in Armenia today. "Thus, continuing to operate these  <GAZelle> minibuses we violate the government's decision, in the  event of an explosion or other incidents, the person directly  responsible for this process will be brought to criminal  responsibility.  Either it is necessary to remove these minibuses  from the transport network, or to make amendments and additions to  the decision of the RA government," he said. However, in a telephone conversation with the correspondent of  ArmInfo, the press secretary of the Yerevan Municipality Hakob  Karapetyan explained that the purchase of small buses, and not  minibuses, as David Khazhakyan claims, does not rule out and in no  way replaces the previously announced tender for the purchase of 100  buses with 12-meter length.  <In view of the fact that, as a result  of the tender announced in April for the purchase of 100 new buses,  the winner was not determined due to non-compliance with the  parameters, so as not to waste time, we announced a tender for the  purchase of 100 small buses, considering this exclusively as a  so-called intermediate option >, he said.   At the same time, he assured that in the near future, as soon as all  the necessary procedures are prepared, the Mayor's Office will  announce a new tender for the purchase of 100 buses with 12-meter  length.  To recall, in July this year, Yerevan Mayor Hayk Marutyan on  his Facebook page stated that the Yerevan Municipality was purchasing  100 new small buses.  "What seemed impossible a year ago has now  become a reality," Marutyan said. He stressed that the Mayor's Office  intends to purchase 100 small buses at the expense of the city  municipality.  The Mayor recalled that a tender was announced in April for the  purchase of 100 12-meter buses for town services, the purchase of  which is carried out with financial assistance from the European Bank  for Reconstruction and Development.  One of the main requirements for  the participants in the new tender is the presence of a low floor for  lifting wheelchairs, heating and ventilation, and the presence of a  fire extinguisher in the driver's cab. "We expect that this batch of  small buses will be in Yerevan in the coming months, and the next 100  buses  with 12- meter length will operate a little later, and we will  already have a noticeable improvement in one of our key areas -  public transport," Hayk Marutyan wrote.