With 125 million passenger trips in its 10 years of operation, South Africa’s Gautrain has contributed R20.4 billion in GDP to the country’s economy in 6 years while creating 10,900 direct jobs.
The Gautrain is an 80-kilometre (50-mile) commuter rail system in Gauteng, South Africa, which links Johannesburg, Pretoria, Ekurhuleni and OR Tambo International Airport.
The service offers a fast, convenient, safe and efficient public transport service. It takes 15 minutes to travel from Sandton to OR Tambo International Airport on the Gautrain and 35 minutes from Pretoria in Tshwane to Park Station in Johannesburg
According to iol.co.za, Gautrain celebrated its 10th year of operations on June 8 after the first train travelled from Sandton Station to the OR Tambo International Airport station exactly one decade earlier.
There was much excitement. South Africa’s first rapid rail airport service had been delivered and the face of public transport had been changed.
After 10 years of operation and close to 125 million train passenger trips and 38 million bus passenger trips, the Gautrain continued to offer a safe, reliable and convenient public transport service, said Gautrain Management Agency (GMA) chief executive William Dachs.
“Gautrain is more than just a train, it is an economic infrastructure project that has contributed to Gauteng’s economy. For every R1 spent on Gautrain, R1.72 has been added to the Gauteng economy.”
The recent independent Hatch impact study concluded that the Gautrain had continued to deliver jobs and investment in Gauteng.
The start of operations in June 2010 saw Gautrain delivering:
10900 direct jobs and around 61000 through supply chain and wage spend.
R59million has been spent on training by the concessionaire to date.
5800 direct jobs for young people.
93% of jobs are mid-level roles (NFQ 2-4) 7% are at the higher level (NFQ 4+).
R20.4 billion contribution to GDP over first six years.
“I would like to thank Gautrain’s staff who work tirelessly every day to ensure that we deliver excellence. Thank you to our stakeholders who are the focus of what we do, and most importantly our passengers who have ensured that Gautrain is part of our African pride,” Dachs said.
The Gauteng MEC for Public Transport and Roads Infrastructure, Jacob Mamabolo, visited the Gautrain Airport service and OR Tambo Station before the service’s commencement of operations on Monday. Gautrain has been slowly extending its operating hours as the lockdown eases.
Mamabolo said: “The purpose of today’s visit was to assess and evaluate the Covid-19 precautionary measures that are in place for travellers and commuters to the airport. I can confidently confirm that this service is ready to resume operations. There are markings, sanitisers and directional signage for passengers,” he said.
“Gautrain’s OR Tambo International Airport station is integrated into the airport, which means there’s a seamless movement of passengers from the train to the airport. Once in the airport, precautionary measures are also in place for the benefit of passengers and travellers.
“This demonstrates what intermodal integration can achieve,” he added.
The use of face masks remains mandatory.