Joburg mayor takes on rogue 'business forums' for blocking service delivery

06 October 2020 - 19:46
By Paul Ash
A Rea Vaya bus. File picture
Image: Antonio Muchave A Rea Vaya bus. File picture

Johannesburg executive mayor Geoffrey Makhubo has warned “rogue” business forums not to block any of the city’s service delivery projects, warning that any such attempts will not be tolerated.

Makhubo’s remarks came during an oversight tour of construction work being carried out on the city’s next phase of its Rea Vaya Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system.

“Business forums should follow proper channels to raise their grievances regarding any city-led projects,” said Makhubo.

The oversight tour, part of October Transport Month activities, was inspecting the new Watt Interchange in Wynberg on the Rea Vaya route that will run from Joburg’s central business district to Alexandra and Sandton. The route, which is due to operate from next year, will connect to the city’s existing BRT routes as well as bring the dream of affordable and seamless travel between the Gauteng, Tshwane and Ekurhuleni metros one step closer.

“Transport is one of the backbones of Johannesburg’s economy and plays a significant role in connecting residents safely and affordably to education, business and work opportunities,” said Makhubo.

Transport is one of the backbones of Johannesburg’s economy
Johannesburg executive mayor Geoffrey Makhubo

About 141 Rea Vaya buses are expected to operate on the new 17km trunk route which is being built at a cost of R2.2bn.

The route will have 13 “low-flow” stations and five interchanges and will boast bridges, cycle routes and pedestrian walkways.

It will be the third BRT route to open since 2009 when the route between Ellis Park and Thokoza Park in Soweto began operating shortly before the 2010 Soccer World Cup.

The Watt Interchange project will see the construction of new BRT lanes and an underground station.

The interchange will allow commuters easy access to minibus taxis, Metrobus services as well as the BRT system.

Makhubo noted that the interchange project was one of the local government’s priorities to help create and support human settlements with sustainable infrastructure projects.

TimesLIVE