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Sat Dec 20 01:27:57 SAST 2014

Gautrain heading to Soweto, Mamelodi

Jan-Jan Joubert | 05 March, 2014 00:04
Peters said the government is, for the first time in decades, building new railway routes. File photo
Image by: Business Day / Martin Rhodes / Gallo Images

The government plans to extend Gautrain services to Mamelodi, Pretoria and Soweto, Transport Minister Dipuo Peters said yesterday.

Though she did not give a time frame, Peters said the plan was for the Gautrain line to join Soweto's Naledi line.

But feasibility studies would be needed first, Peters said.

She said there was public demand for the extension of the Gautrain service to Fourways, which experiences massive traffic congestion daily.

More than 50000 passengers use the Gautrain daily but Peters believes that this number can be greatly increased.

One of the biggest problems besetting the Gautrain service, she said, was the lack of parking for commuters at stations.

Peters said that the Metrorail coaches - most of which have been in use since the 1980s - are being upgraded.

She cautioned that the weak rand posed a challenge to financing the upgrading of rolling stock.

Peters said the government is, for the first time in decades, building new railway routes.

Among these routes are the Moloto corridor, between Gauteng and Mpumalanga, and a line between East London and King William's Town, in Eastern Cape.

Also being planned are rail links between Botshabelo and Bloemfontein, in the Free State, and the Bridge City development, in KwaMashu, north of Durban.

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