New risk-management agency to be set up

Posted On Thursday, 12 October 2006 02:00 Published by eProp Commercial Property News
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The Gauteng executive had also approved, last week, the creation of a new not-for-profit enterprise, the Gautrain Management Agency, which would essentially manage government's overall risk exposure to the mega project.

Infrastructure IndustryThe Gauteng executive had also approved, last week, the creation of a new not-for-profit enterprise, the Gautrain Management Agency, which would essentially manage government's overall risk exposure to the mega project.

The agency would seek to promote public transport and the integration of the project into the municipal transport plans and well as facilitate social and economic development around the project and sound environmental management. This risk-mitigation agency would oversee project implementation and the operation of the concession.

In fact, integration of the project with other modes of transport in the province emerged as the central theme of the meeting, with parliamentary portfolio committee chairperson Jeremy Cronin, an open critic of the project, challenging the leadership of the project to pay more attention to how the operational model could serve as a catalyst for the delivery of an efficient and affordable intermodal public-transport platform.

However, he did express some satisfaction with efforts towards integration since the project was last presented to the committee in Cape Town, in November last year. Nonetheless, he remained sceptical that the project would achieve its intention of diverting commuters from Gauteng's congested motorways. He called on the provincial and local transport officials to find ways of integrating the R7-billion taxi recapitalisation programme - which he described as unsustainable in its current form - with the train, as well as with the 165-strong bus system set emerge around the stations.

Van der Merwe indicated that it could well be possible to integrate taxi and bus operators into the feeder-and-distribution system, which would operate in a 10 km radius of the ten Gautrain stations. However, he pointed out that first operations would only begin in 2010 and that the final business model for the feeder system was still to be fully developed.

Cronin also expressed a strong desire for the existing Metrorail system to be better integrated with the train and for the Gauteng authorities to seek out sustainable bus and taxi operational models, far removed from the “scatter gun” model currently in operation where subsidised and nonsubsidised modes competed for the same routes.

Gauteng and Department of Transport officials present at the meeting insisted that its future tenders for routes would not specify the transport mode, and would open the way for taxi operators to feed into the subsidy system, currently reserved for buses. They also foresaw joint ventures being created between taxi and bus operators with the taxis feeding into the bus system rather than competing with it head on.

Meanwhile, Cabinet, which also met on Wednesday, reviewed a Draft Public Transport Strategy and approved its release for public consultation.

The strategy proposes a shift away from the current operator-controlled, route-based system to a public controlled, user-friendly and integrated rapid transit networks. The draft strategy would be published shortly and a public transport Indaba would be convened during October to facilitate consultation,

 

Last modified on Monday, 04 November 2013 08:46

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