The Gauteng government is going ahead with the introduction of more Gautrain routes to areas, including townships.
It says the long-term plan is to see the rapid passenger train running between Soweto and Sandton, north of Johannesburg.
The Gautrain Management Agency conducted a feasibility study on the possible extension of the rapid rail network sytem. It found that the extension of the rail network would provide significant economic and transport-related benefits.
However, the Automobile Association (AA) says the demand for the Gautrain has dwindled and government should instead invest in a more affordable transport system such as buses.
The AA says the Gautrain is also not a solution to reducing pollution and traffic congestion. However, Transport MEC Jacob Mamabolo disagrees.
“Public transport is a demand driven system. In other words, it is the economy and economic activity that creates a demand for public transport not visa-versa. That is why we are very confident that the low numbers in public transport in general including Gautrain are a direct function of low economic activity because of Covid-19. The challenges brought to bear on Gautrain by Covid-19 are not permanent. We are going to return to good economic activity.”