The Gautrain Management Agency (GMA) is in negotiations with several companies in the United Kingdom to acquire additional train booths or "rolling stock" to expand the Gautrain service.
The agency has the goal of acquiring between 18 and 35 trainers for Gautrain, which will be used to meet the demand during peak periods on popular routes.
Barbara Jensen-Vorster, senior executive of Communications and Marketing at GMA, told MyBroadband that second-hand rolling stock would help ease trains piled up during popular travel times.
"The new rolling stock will be used to improve the Gautrain service by increasing the number of current train groups that will be at the peak times," said Jensen-Vorster.
"There are currently not enough trains during peak hours to transport passengers traveling in the highest periods between (from 06:00 to 09:00 and from 15:00 to 18:00) and this prevents us from increasing the number of travelers in these peaks ".
Treasury approval is required for expansion
This new mobile material can also be useful when the GMA can implement its proposed extensions to the Gautrain railway system.
Jensen-Vorster said the GMA required the approval of the National Treasury before breaking its new routes and stations, and is currently awaiting this result.
"The situation remains that the feasibility study of the extensions has been sent to the National Treasury in 2017 for the approval of Treasury 1 (" TA1 ") for the first phase of the deployment scenarios of the proposed network" said Jensen-Vorster.
"The expected date of breaking is not yet possible, since it depends on the achievement of the TA1, which will allow starting the recruitment process that in itself implies other treasury approvals."
"However, the GMA has also initiated a preliminary study of the alignment of the routes to determine the route of phases 1 and 2 of the proposed network," he said.
He added that this study is being carried out in accordance with the requirements of the Transport Infrastructure Act of Gauteng and will result in the MEC of the transport being able to formally define route alignments for these phases
The acquisition of mobile material is only the beginning in accordance with the expansion plans of the GMA rail system, although it has previously published a detailed plan for the addition of new routes.
The GMA announced for the first time that it would be studying the extension of the footprint of Gautrain in 2017, which will outline a five-step plan to implement new stations and routes in the cities of Johannesburg and Pretoria.
"This allows for long-term planning, but as we have indicated in the previous answer, at this stage we have only applied to the National Treasury for its approval for phase 1," said Jensen-Vorster.
"This phase goes from Marlboro to Sandton to Randburg to Cosmo at Little Falls."
This would result in the addition of three new stations in the last three places mentioned above.
Once the GMA has obtained approval and the establishment of these new stations, it intends to further expand the railway system to provide a series of new stations along existing and new routes.
In addition to the expansion plans, Gautrain has also been experimenting with new methods of payment to facilitate the purchase of a ticket.
Pump it recently announced I would add support for contactless card payments on all Gautrain stations, allowing customers to touch their bank card instead of their Gautrain Gold Card to access the platform.
"We are currently preparing to launch the service to all Gautrain passengers and we are sure that we will inform you of the details related to the official launch," the company said in an email to the users participating in the non-contact pilot program.
Planned Gautrain expansions are detailed in the table and image below, and phase 1 mentioned is the addition of Randburg, Cosmo and Little Falls stations to the east-west line.
|Gautrain expansion plans: new stations|
|North-South||Irene, Tshwane East|
|East West||East Rand Mall, Modderfontein, Randburg, Cosmo, Little Falls, Roodepoort, Jabulani, Fourways, Sunninghill|
|Airport||Modderfontein, Randburg, Cosmo|
|Phase 5||Lanseria, Boksburg, Olievenhoutsbosch, Hazeldean, Mamelodi, Boksburg|
|Integration of Metrorail||Rhodesfield, Irene, Prtoria, Hatfiled, Roodeport, Park, Jabulani, Boksburg|
Now read: Gautrain will allow passengers to touch their bank card to pay for travel