After smooth trial run, ‘Ambari’ set for launch

All constraints cleared for city tour on the double-decker

Thanks to its successful trial run, the countdown for the launch of KSTDC’s double-decker open-roof bus tours has begun as all constraints had been cleared, ending the wait for experiencing in a different way.

The bus had a few trial runs on the 36-km long route within the city limits, mostly covering the best part of Mysuru’s heritage beauty. The open roof bus tours are expected to attract tourists at a time when the stakeholders were striving to revive the tourism sector hit by the pandemic.

The roll out was delayed over the pandemic and the KSTDC had to wait for other hurdles to be cleared to bring the bus on the road.

Chamundeshwari Electricity Supply Corporation (CESC) relocated the overhead electricity lines that were obstructing the free movement of the bus on the designated route. The KSTDC had requested the CESC for shifting the transmission lines besides urging the Forest Department and the Mysuru City Corporation for pruning tree branches along the route to facilitate unhindered movement.

Accordingly, the overhead HT and LT transmission lines on the route had been removed and laid underground to facilitate the movement of ‘Ambari’. The CESC had warned agencies which had used the electric poles for running its cables, including the cable TV networks, for clearing them immediately.

A KSTDC source facilitating the trial runs said: “All hurdles have been cleared and the bus has been smooth run on the designated route. What remains is the formal launch of the tours. The KSTDC will take a final call on the date on which the bus will roll out.”

‘Ambari’ is a specially-built double-decker bus for open-roof bus tours. The launch was planned in March last year but was put off indefinitely in view of pandemic.

However, the KSTDC was keen to roll out the open-roof bus tours and ferrying tourists on the designated route to help them experience the beauty of Mysuru’s rich heritage on the go during Dasara last year. However, the launch was hit since the overhead electricity lines had not been cleared by then for the smooth movement of the 16-feet tall bus.

The 40-seater bus, with lower and upper decks, was built in Bengaluru.

Besides four ‘Ambari’ buses for Mysuru, the KSTDC plans to operate two buses in Hampi, the UNESCO world heritage site, as well. Ambari is a hop-on, hop-off initiative for tourists to experience the palaces and heritage buildings of Mysuru.

Tourists will get an audio guide the moment the bus reaches the tourist sites identified on the route. The audio will be available in two languages in the beginning — Kannada and English. The KSTDC plans to add foreign languages subsequently.

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