Khayelitsha commuters using the City of Cape Town’s MyCiTi busses will no longer be left in the dark.
The city’s Transport and Urban Development Authority has commenced with the electrification of the permanent MyCiTi bus stops along the N2 Express routes in Khayelitsha, which, according to the city, has become increasingly popular since the Khayelitsha East route was introduced in July 2014 and the West route in 2015.
"All in all, there are 35 permanent MyCiTi bus stops along these routes, 31 of which will be provided with lighting. Seeing that Khayelitsha falls within an Eskom supply area, the city had to wait for Eskom to provide us with the necessary electricity points so that we could install lighting," said the city’s mayco member for transport and urban development Brett Herron.
The City is spending approximately R2.6-million on this project, which should be completed by the end of the year if all goes as planned.
Nearly 115 000 passengers travel along the N2 Express routes between Khayelitsha and the Civic Centre each month. Our records show that on average, 3 700 commuters board the MyCiTi buses in the morning peak-hour period on weekdays. These routes are very popular and we are working hard to continually improve the service,' said Councillor Herron.
The city's mayco member for Area East Anda Ntsodo said some of the commuters – among them mothers on their way to work and learners going to school – wait for the MyCiTi buses long before sunrise.
"This project is very important because once fitted with lights, the commuters will no longer have to wait in a dark bus shelter for the bus to arrive. Lighting in the bus shelters will make a huge difference to the commuters’ experience of the MyCiTi service and to their personal safety in general," said Ntsodo.
Each bus shelter will be fitted with three lights.
"There is one light fitting for the feeder route map so that commuters can see the departure and arrival times of the busses, another for the advertising box, and a third external totem light to light up the stop location," said Herron.
Special care will be taken to ensure that the installations aren't easy prey for thieves and vandals.
"The vandalism of MyCiTi infrastructure is common across the city. I am appealing to the local community and MyCiTi commuters to please report theft and vandalism of our infrastructure. It is very costly and time-consuming to replace infrastructure. My biggest concern, however, is about the impact that these crimes have on vulnerable commuters – in particular women and children – who make use of the service at night or in the early morning hours," said Herron.