This month we ask: what’s really needed to properly plan public transport?
A recent newspaper article has underlined an ominous situation in Gauteng. Sooner or later someone will have to intervene – and it may have to go all the way to the Constitutional Court, which has recently pronounced in favour of both the “little man” and the community at large.
Now that our economy has reached the brink of junk status, many observers are trying to explain how we got there and what needs to be done to turn things around. Sadly, they routinely fail to emphasise the role that bad public transport is playing.
Sifting through thousands of pages going back to 1963, one thing becomes clear – South Africa is not, and has never been, serious about public transport. If the promises made in 1993 had been acted upon then, there would have been no need for either the Gautrain or a fourth lane on the freeway.
Observers are warning that, in 2016, the economy will either go into free-fall, or somehow start to claw back some of the ground lost through mismanagement and incompetence. Can public transport play a part?
This month, this column writes itself. Those responsible for October Transport Month (OTM) usually churn out enough nonsense to fill two columns, leaving me with the problem of what to leave out.
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