Gauteng to roll out new transport plans

The Gauteng department of transport is ready to implement a detailed plan for the 2010 Fifa Soccer World Cup showpiece.

The Gauteng department of transport is ready to implement a detailed plan for the 2010 Fifa Soccer World Cup showpiece.

The department's 2010 transport director, Sipho Mbele, told journalists in Johannesburg that the plan would include various modes of public transport to cater for people coming from various provinces to watch the games at Soccer City and Ellis Park in Johannesburg, and Loftus Versfeld Stadium in Pretoria.

He also announced that the province's plans would be integrated with those of municipalities.

"Over the next 40 days we will continue to coordinate transport entities with host and non-host cities with a view to ensuring the effective integration of land, rail and road movement," Mbele said.

He said the department had processed 1619 applications for special operating licences.

"We will be ready to issue these permits from May 28, which is 14 days before the event, as required by law," he said.

Contracts, to be awarded to service providers through the Gautrain Management Agency, would operate from OR Tambo International Airport to the Pretoria railway station and Westgate station in Johannesburg, Lanseria Airport to Pretoria and Sandton to Pretoria.

The interprovincial plan will also cater for soccer followers from other host cities who will flock to Gauteng.

Gauteng will host 19 games.

Mbele said talks were continuing with the taxi industry on the role they would play. He said 120 taxis and 20 buses were expected to be part of the road transport plan.

In addition to normal train services, eight trains dedicated to the event were planned for Pretoria and 10 for Johannesburg. The Bus Rapid Transit system, Mbele said, would have its full phase 1A operation of 143 buses.

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