Coming along well
The Rustenburg Local Municipality recently hosted an information session to update journalists on progress with the implementation of its rapid transport programme.
Work began on the Rustenburg Rapid Transport (RRT) system in 2011, and, say the organisers, all is on track ahead of the 2015/16 opening of the first phase of services. The system will be rolled out in four phases, with Phase One being the epicentre and accounting for 45 percent of the total system.
“The project is being introduced in four phases according to funding and to ensure all affected parties have adequate time to adjust to the major changes that are happening and to minimise disruption for residents,” says Marks Rapoo, RRT director.
Phase One will be integrated into areas with the highest traffic volumes and passenger demand, serving the CBD from Tlhabane, Boitekong, Waterfall Mall and Meriting. It will feature 13 routes totalling 127 km, with 240 bus stops and 15 BRT stations.
On these routes, 268 buses will complete 225 000 passenger trips per day. Corridor A of Phase One will be completed by the end of the year, with work on Corridor B starting mid-year. Work on Corridor A has created 278 jobs and Phase One will create 2 500 jobs in total.
Bus procurement for Phase One will begin towards the end of the year. The 268 buses will be made up of 34 articulated and 234 standard units.
With the introduction of Phase One, the Rustenburg local municipality aims to impact the largest number of people as quickly as possible. Central to this is the R150-million RRT Central Station, located in Thabo Mbeki Drive, between Oliver Thambo and Nelson Mandela Drives, in the CBD. The station’s positioning is intended to enhance the city centre and be a catalyst for rejuvenation of the CBD.
Construction of the 14-platform station will begin in October and run for 24 months. If the details are anything to go by, Central Station should attract the required commuters. It will be constructed in the middle of Thabo Mbeki Drive and built in two sections joined by a central pedestrian bridge. All pedestrian crossings will be raised for traffic calming and pedestrian safety.
The split-level building has been designed in a “modern African architectural style”, taking into account environmental factors. These include natural ventilations, rain water harvesting, landscaped courtyards at each end, maintenance-free materials and LED lighting. It will feature a ticket office and three lock-up bicycle facilities, as well as security-controlled access to platforms and CCTV security cameras.