Quick bus system doing fine

Luzuko Pongoma

Luzuko Pongoma

The construction of Johannesburg's new bus system is proceeding smoothly, say municipal officials.

Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) will have dedicated lanes on main roads that will allow a constant stream of big buses to whizz through the city.

Buses will run no more than 10 minutes apart and connect areas as far apart as Regina Mundi in Soweto in the south and Sandton in the north.

Municipal spokesman Virgil James said development on phase one of the BRT started last year though most of it has been happening behind the scenes.

"The BRT system will have 122km of trunk routes and 150 stations half a kilometre apart," James said.

He said bad roads covered only the first phase of construction on 40km of trunk routes and 48 stations. This phase would be ready for next year's Confederations Cup.

James said long, articulated multi-part buses would traverse the trunk routes and be supplemented by smaller buses.

"We want to eliminate teething problems before the 2010 World Cup and continue with the extension of the routes," James said.

He said residents and motorists were informed when construction is planned in an area.

"We use flyers, notices and newspaper ads to inform affected motorists and communities. Metro police are always ready to help if we need them," James said.