Managed traffic lanes have been proposed for Joburg roads to ease congestion, and the City wants public input on its proposed policy.
THE public has until Monday, 2 April, to make final submissions on the draft policy on managed traffic lanes.
Pedestrian routes are being createdPedestrian routes are being createdThe policy, which proposes that the City construct designated traffic lanes for various modes of transport to help ease congestion and promote the use of public transport, has been approved for public comment by its department of transportation.
It sets out the context, conditions and criteria that the City should apply when determining if a managed lane should be introduced, what kind of managed lane, with what features and what conditions. High occupancy vehicle lanes, exclusive bus or truck lanes, access strategies, express lanes, by-pass lanes and ramp meters are some of the strategies that could be implemented.
“The intention of the policy is to effectively use existing road space differently by introducing managed lanes of various kinds to reduce congestion and promote public transport,” says a City spokesperson, Dudu Lushaba.
She says the idea of managed traffic lanes is contained in the City’s Growth and Development Strategy, which identifies the need to reduce traffic congestion and its effects on residents. “It identifies that we need a future where public transport, walking and cycling are the modes of choice.”
According to an IBM commuter pain index published in the latter part of last year, Joburg is the third worst city when it comes to the emotional and economic toll of commuting. The index uses a scale of one to 100, with 100 being the most onerous. It reveals disparities in the pain of the daily commute from city to city, and was conducted to get a better understanding of what consumers think about congestion.
“The [City] policy document sets out short-, medium- and long-term measures to be introduced in the City. It indicates that an assessment should be made of the area experiencing congestion to determine the feasibility of managed lanes on the system as a whole or portion of the system,” Lushaba explains.
It suggests that managed lanes can be used to increase the average travel speed and time, facilitate seamless access to major economic nodes, increase the efficiency of the transport system, improve the performance and reliability of public transport, improve air quality and decrease greenhouse gas emissions associated with traffic congestion.
All residents, businesses, institutions and stakeholders are invited to comment on the proposed policy. “Residents are encouraged to share their thoughts to help develop better use of road space,” she says. The draft policy on managed traffic lanes can be downloaded online.
Written submissions should be posted to Lisa Seftel, the executive director of transport, PO Box 31923, Braamfontein, 2000 or hand delivered to the eighth floor north, 66 Sauer Street, JRA Building, corner Jeppe and Sauer streets, or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A public consultation meeting on the proposed policy was held on Friday, 2 March at the Metro Centre. The date for final submissions is Monday, 2 April to allow for public inputs, comments, objections and representations, Lushaba said.
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