Trinidad and Tobago Road Urban Transport Rail Air Ports and Shipping ¡ Trinidad and Tobago has 9592 km of roadways in length, of which 5524 km is paved. The road network is mostly confined to foothills of mountain ranges, the plains and along the coastline.
¡ ‘Country Strategy Paper’ suggests priority to be given to an investment in road, bridge and drainage works as the network has deteriorated significantly over the years. ¡ Public transport is provided by a bus service operated by government-owned Public Transport Service Corporation (PTSC), privately owned mini-buses (locally known as maxi-taxis) and privately owned cars. ¡ The main bus terminals at City Gate in South Quay, Port of Spain and at Sangster’s Hill in Sacarborough respectively. ¡ Maxi-taxis and some cars carry passengers along fixed routes for a fixed fare. Car taxis are not allowed to utilise the Priority Bus Route, and as such maxi-taxis and buses are preferable.
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¡ Recently there has also been a growth in popularity of American-style taxi-cabs that do not work along a fixed route and they can be booked for specific times for specific journeys. ¡ There is a minimal agricultural railway system near San Fernando, but the Trinidad Government Railway was gradually scaled back until it was discontinued in 1968. ¡ The country has 2 airports, one on each island. The larger of the two is Piarco International Airport (PIA) in Trinidad though ANR Robinson (TAB) also has service to the United States and Europe. ¡ PIA has a 3,600-metre runway able to accommodate large wide-body commercial aircraft.
The airport’s north terminal features 14 second-level aircraft gates with jet bridges for international flights, two ground-level domestic gates and 82 ticket counter positions. ¡ PIA has been outpacing regional peers in passenger and cargo movement growth and is emerging as a cargo hub in the southern Caribbean, well positioned to serve the growing South American market. While many other southern Caribbean airports are restricted by limited runway sizes, PIA is well positioned to become a break bulk centre, receiving large loads, and repackaging and forwarding freight for regional delivery ¡ The Airports Authority of Trinidad and Tobago has been attempting to diversify its business portfolio and increase its non-aeronautical revenue by developing the Caribbean’s first “aerotropolis.” ¡ TAB has been experiencing rapid domestic traffic growth, which is placing significant pressure on existing infrastructure. ¡ State-owned Caribbean Airlines became the leading airline in the Caribbean and a flag carrier for Guyana and Jamaica (after purchasing bankrupt Air Jamaica), with an operational base at Norman Manley International Airport in Jamaica as well.
¡ Expansion of American and Canadian LCCs JetBlue and WestJet into the region has been eating into Caribbean Airlines’ main source of profit. ¡ The Port Authority of Trinidad and Tobago is a statutory body under the Port Authority of Trinidad and Tobago Governing Unit (PATTGU) and governs all activities relating to sea freight in the country and directs several smaller bodies within the bounds of the Port Authority Act (1961). ¡ PATTGU is also responsible for the Trinidad and Tobago Inter-Island Transportation Company (TTIT) which runs a passenger ferry service between the islands. ¡ The Shipping Association of Trinidad and Tobago is a major industry body which is affiliated with other regional associations including the Caribbean Shipping Association (CSA).
¡ There are two main maritime ports in the country that currently undertake transhipment activity – the port of Port of Spain and that of Point Lisas. It has 15 berths of varying lengths, from 72-248m with a depth of over 200m. ¡ The Port at Point Lisas is often referred to as the ‘gateway to the Americas’ and has Point Lisas Industrial Port Development Corporation (PLIPDECO) as is authority. Point Lisas has six commercial berths and deals with shipments of a wide range of goods. ¡ Ferries operate between Port of Spain and Scarborough.
Cars can be brought onto the ferries which run daily. The ferries are inexpensive, in spite of the minimum 2½–3 hour travel time between Port of Spain and Scarborough. ¡ The Water Taxi Service (Trinidad and Tobago) operates between the cities of Port of Spain and San Fernando at a peak rate of five sailings from San Fernando to Port of Spain per morning. Each sailing carries approximately 400 passengers. Travel time is 50 mins and the cost of the service is heavily subsidized.