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New Rea Vaya route links Joburg CBD, Alexandra and Sandton
A total of 141 Rea Vaya buses are expected to roar into motion on the Phase 1C Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) trunk route between the Johannesburg Central Business District (CBD), Alexandra and Sandton in just over a year’s time.
 
The 17km trunk route, which is being developed by the City of Johannesburg at a cost of more than R2.2-billion, consists of 13 low-flow stations, five interchanges and improved bridges as well as cycle routes and pedestrian walkways as part of the quest to migrate to ecomobility.
 
It is the third BRT trunk route to be implemented since 2009.
The first was Phase 1A – between Thokoza Park in Rockville, Soweto, and Ellis Park Park, near Ellis Park Stadium – came on stream in time for the Fifa Confederations Cup, ahead of the 2010 Soccer World.
 
Phase 1B was implemented in 2013 to link Soweto to the Johannesburg CBD via the Noordgesig-Westbury-Melville-Auckland Park Corridor. Phase 1C is expected to become operational in October 2018, according to Member of the Mayoral Committee for Transport Cllr Nonhlanhla Makhuba.
 
The fleet to be deployed on the route will consist of 109 articulated and 32 rigid buses.
 
MMC Makhuba says the new BRT route will dramatically improve the quality of public transport in Johannesburg.
 
She says the service offering will provide the more than 10 000 Alexandra residents who walk to and from work in the Sandton CBD on a daily basis a safe, convenient and reliable transport option.
 
“Now Alexandra residents will have the option of walking or cycling along a safe wide sidewalks and crossing the M1 on a dedicated bridge or using Rea Vaya BRT. The City is thus bringing pro-poor high quality public transport that is safe, affordable and reliable between the CBD, Alexandra and Sandton and will enable people to travel to work and schools and access healthcare and recreational facilities within shorter travel times.
 
“In addition, walking and cycling is made easier, safer and more convenient through an exclusive bridge to enable residents to walk and cycle,” says Cllr Makhuba.
 
She says in addition to introducing and providing safe, convenient and affordable integrated public transport, Phase 1C will also reduce traffic congestion and begin creating a shift from using private vehicles to public transport.
 
“Rea Vaya, Metrobus, Putco, Gautrain buses, Uber and minibus taxis all have an important role to play in reducing traffic congestion,” says Cllr Makhuba.
 
“This phase will not only improve public transport service offerings, but it will also create economic and employment opportunities for local residents,” says Makhuba.
 
These will include positions for bus drivers and staff at the bus operating company as well as at various BRT stations and interchanges.
 
“Transport is the backbone of Johannesburg’s economy and plays a significant role in connecting the historically displaced communities to business opportunities in the inner-city of Johannesburg and other business hubs such as the Sandton CBD.
 
“We are addressing the ill-effects of the past and implementing programmes linking residents to economic opportunities and providing quality public transport services closer to the people. In this way, we are contributing to growing Johannesburg residents and easing the plight of the poor,” concludes Cllr Makhuba.
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