The abandoned bus terminal has turned into a truck stop
The municipality bus terminal in Jamalpur has been deserted for over a decade now, leaving commuters in a lurch.
Over the last ten years, bus counters shifted from the terminal to various places across the city. The move resulted in severe traffic congestion as buses are parked on city roads and drivers make frequent stops to pick up or drop off passengers.
The abandoned bus terminal has become a truck stop and cracks have developed in the main terminal building, rendering it completely useless.
According to locals and traders, the terminal was constructed in Ferryghata Chankanda area, in 1999, in a bid to reduce traffic congestion in the city and to ensure a hassle-free journey for passengers of the Jamalpur-Mymensingh-Dhaka routes.
Though the terminal provided a central bus service and managed to draw huge amounts of passengers in the early stages, bus owners later started to open counters inside the city, gradually deserting the terminal. Due to the moves, all activities at the terminal ceased at some point. Currently, the abandoned terminal space is being used by truck drivers.
Several bus drivers—Hakim Molla, AL Amin, Liton Mia, and Khoka Sheikh—said that the terminal has no boundary wall, plus it does not provide any housing, resting, or eating facilities to drivers and transport workers. The bus drivers said they cannot stay at the terminal at night because of safety concerns.
However, some drivers and transport workers, on condition of anonymity, said: “Some extortionists in Chanakanda area collect illegal levies from drivers and give them permits to travel on roads, based on that payment. If the extortionists can be removed from the site, then the terminal can be revived. City dwellers demand the separate counters be closed and the central bus terminal be reactivated. It will reduce traffic jams and provide better transportation services.”
Jamalpur Municipality Mayor Mirza Sakhawatul Alam Moni said the bus terminal will be renovated: “A decision has been made to shut down all city bus counters and re-open the terminal.”