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Transport, mobility and access

Transport planning activities should be focused on the avoidance of unnecessary travel, and feasible and safe alternatives to the private vehicle. Operational plans should include strategies to minimise travel needs related to the event and host city activities.

Public transport should account for as large a portion as possible of all travel to stadia, and should be integrated with park-and-ride facilities. Suitable Non-Motorised Transport (NMT) infrastructure, including walkways, pedestrian crossings, appropriate surfacing, sufficient lighting, etc, should be in place around the stadia to encourage walking to events.

All official vehicles as well as public transport vehicles purchased as part of the public transport upgrades should meet the most appropriate standards for fuel efficiency and Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions.

The projects

  • Development of bicycle and pedestrian facilities
  • Development of public transport infrastructure
  • CBD bicycle services
  • Eco-taxis

Project progress

  • Development of bicycle and pedestrian facilities
  • Development of public transport infrastructure
  • CBD bicycle services

The 2010 FIFA World Cup™ has been a catalyst for significant investment in public transport and NMT facilities in Cape Town. Phase 1a of the City of Cape Town’s (CoCT) new Integrated Rapid Transport (IRT) system will be operational by June 2010, and, together with rail, will form the backbone of the public transport system for the World Cup event.

Phase 1a of the IRT system includes an airport shuttle and match-day shuttle services between the stadium and the main transport hub in Hertzog Boulevard. New IRT trunk stations are being constructed at Cape Town International Airport, Hertzog Boulevard and Green Point Stadium.

Investment in infrastructure by the CoCT and the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) will enable legacy improvements to at least 15 stations to promote rail-based park-and-ride during the World Cup event. Additional parking, security and lighting will be in place at these stations, and station facilities are being upgraded as part of the project.

Cape Town Station is also undergoing a major refurbishment, which is on track to be completed by December 2009.

It is anticipated that the IRT system and the additional rail services on match days will assist Host City Cape Town to meet the Local Organising Committee target of 50% of fans to travel to the 2010 stadia by public transport.

In addition to the investment in bus and rail public transport, new pedestrian and bicycle lanes are being constructed in the city. A new pedestrian and cycle route between the CBD and Green Point Stadium will see Waterkant Street between Burg Street and Buitengracht pedestrianised ahead of the event, and the sidewalk of Somerset Road widened to accommodate a bicycle lane and additional footway. This will be the official fan walk between the CBD and Green Point Stadium during the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ in Cape Town.

Two new pedestrian bridges are being constructed over Buitengracht, one at the intersection with Waterkant Street and the other at North Wharf Square, to provide a safe crossing for pedestrians over this busy route.

A new bicycle route and pedestrian walkway, a requirement of the ROD, is being constructed through the stadium precinct and around Green Point Common. This new route will link up with existing bicycle and pedestrian routes along the Mouille Point and Sea Point promenades, as well as via the fan walk to the CBD.

The establishment of a bicycle rental service to complement the IRT system is currently being scoped. A number of international models are being investigated, including systems operational in Paris, Barcelona and Amsterdam. The systems all rely on customers registering to use the service, and will require the construction of additional bicycle lanes as part of the long-term NMT strategy for Cape Town.

Mobility for persons with disabilities is a high priority for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™. Special measures and operational services are included in the Host City Transport Operations Plan (HCTOP) to provide transport for this market. The new IRT stations are wheelchair-friendly, and additional measures are included in the rail station upgrade project to improve services to persons with disabilities. Special match-day shuttles will be available to take mobility-impaired persons as close to the stadium precinct as possible, with negotiations under way to allow these shuttles to enter the stadium.

Lessons learnt on bicycle and pedestrian facilities, development of public transport infrastructure and CBD bicycle services

It is a major challenge to develop a safe and reliable public transport system for an event of the magnitude of the World Cup – more so in Cape Town, where the share of public transport as a transport mode has been declining in recent years. It is expected that the new IRT system and investment in the upgrade of rail infrastructure in preparation for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ will play a major role to reverse this trend.

An efficient public transport system is not only required for the safe transportation of fans, but also to contribute significantly to lower the carbon footprint of the event. Transport already accounts for 50% of Cape Town’s energy use. New public transport and NMT infrastructure will assist to reduce this over time. To put it in perspective, compared to single-occupant private vehicles, fans will consume a tenth of the energy by taking the train, and about a quarter taking a bus.

The scoping of a bicycle rental service in Cape Town is an exciting addition to the IRT project planning. New bicycle lanes are already being constructed alongside IRT lanes on certain routes, and a bicycle rental service has the potential to integrate seamlessly with the IRT, particularly in the CBD. Challenges with regard to the provision of infrastructure, road safety and theft must be addressed, but other cities have shown that public awareness and a good monitoring system can overcome these. In addition, the private sector has identified a niche for the provision of bicycle rickshaw services in Cape Town. It is anticipated that these services will also increase once the IRT is fully operational in the CBD.


The original intention had been to facilitate the establishment of a fleet of low-emission, energy-efficient, eco-friendly metered taxis operating in the CBD for 2010 and beyond. These taxis are already available in many cities, including London, Dublin, Auckland and Taipei. Ecotaxis have low fuel consumption and energy-efficient technology, thereby reducing emissions that harm the environment.

After engagement with various stakeholders involved in the authorisation of metered taxi services in the Western Cape, it however became clear that Local Government does not have a mandate to create an eco-friendly taxi service. The Provincial Taxi Council grants licences to private operators/drivers after consultation with local government and existing operators. The system is demand-driven, responding to requests from the private sector, rather than supply-driven, whereby licences are offered to those who qualify.

The focus of this project has now shifted to the development of an eco-driving training module for metered-taxi drivers in Cape Town. Provincial Government Western Cape (PGWC) has partnered with the South African Petroleum Industry Association (SAPIA) to develop a training module that could be included in the compulsory professional driver training course offered to metered-taxi drivers. As part of a pilot project, 20 drivers will be trained and their eco-driving monitored. Based on the outcome of the pilot project, PGWC will request the new course contents to be accredited as a module of the professional driver unit standard. In support of this project, the CoCT will promote eco-driving as part of its campaigns to raise awareness and reduce carbon emissions in annual Transport Month in October.

Lessons learnt on eco-taxis project

It became clear from various engagements with authorities responsible for overseeing taxis that this is a very complex industry with many role players and issues to consider. In addition, in recent years, the industry has become more regulated, and roles and responsibilities are more clearly defined.

The original proposal to offer new permits for eco-taxis cannot be accommodated within the current legislative mandate of provincial and local government. Government responds to an application from the private sector, and is not in a position to offer licences based on certain criteria, such as the environmental features of the vehicle. In fact, it was pointed out that there are no emission standards for metered taxis operating in South Africa. The only criterion for the vehicles is that they must be roadworthy. The permit is issued to the operator/driver, not to the vehicle, which allows old vehicles with high potential for carbon emissions to operate alongside new vehicles with better emission profiles. It was decided that PGWC will be raising this issue with the Department of Transport (DOT), and will request a review of the policy, and the incorporation of emission standards into the permitting process.

The focus has now shifted to the training of taxi drivers in eco-driving principles. SAPIA, an active member of the City’s Vehicle Emissions Working Group and Provincial Air Quality Management Team, has offered to sponsor the development of an eco-driving training module, to be included in the unit standards for a professional driver permit. This initiative again highlights the value of partnerships as a catalyst for behavioural change. PGWC will roll out the training to 20 drivers as part of a pilot programme. Based on the outcome of the pilot, PGWC will request that this course become part of its official programme to improve the skills of metered-taxi drivers in the province.

Key references and source material

  • City of Cape Town. November 2008. Host City Transport Operations Plan Version 3.
  • City of Cape Town. June 2009. Cape Town’s Integrated Rapid Transit System
  • Sustainable Energy Africa. April 2009. A Green Goal 2010 Workshop: Taking
    responsibility for tourism during the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ (Cape Town).

© City of Cape Town, 2016