The Bill to establish a Gauteng Transport Authority (GTA) has been approved by Cabinet. Speaking at the i-Transport and UATP Go Green, Go Smart conference in Midrand on Tuesday, Gauteng Roads and Transport MEC Dr Ismail Vadi said the Bill would now be tabled at the Gauteng legislature “within the next few weeks”.
There would also be a round of public consultations on the Bill.Vadi said the GTA would bring about a number of institutional changes. As a legal entity it would be able to enforce participation from all three metropolitan councils in Gauteng.Ultimately the aim was to ensure integrated transport planning and the pooling of resources, to the mutual advantage of all three metros, as well as the provincial government.
Vadi added that the development of Gautrain 2 – the 150-km, 19-station proposed expansion of the current 80-km Gautrain network – was “being held back” by National Treasury.
The Gautrain Management Authority was currently awaiting Treasury Approval 1 (TA1) for the project, before it could develop the project further. Vadi said that a “high-level task team” was working with National Treasury to advance the project. However, he noted, the question was whether government had sufficient financial resources to develop Gautrain 2. He expressed the hope that the current Gauteng administration would secure TA1, allowing the new administration in office following next year’s national and provincial elections, to start implementing the rail expansion project.
Vadi said there would be a meeting this week with all the stakeholders in Gauteng’s three bus rapid transit (BRT) networks, in an effort to “fast-track” the development of these systems in Tshwane, Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni.