The eThekwini Transport Authority (ETA) of the eThekwini Municipality has been at the forefront of transportation planning for the past fifty years and macroscopic traffic modelling has been at the heart of much work that has been done during this period. Large volumes of data were collected and many macro models have been developed in order to better predict future traffic growth. This enabled the city to prepare short, medium and long term plans to cater for the anticipated traffic growth in the greater Durban area. Over this period the size and shape of the city study area has grown from 800 km2 to about 2 555 km2. Similarly the population has grown fivefold to about 3.6 million.
This paper explores the journey of transportation planning in the City and highlights traffic predictions and infrastructure planning emanating from the analysis. The paper further highlights the level of accuracy of the predictions, challenges and key opportunities. Technological advances have played a pivotal role in this journey. The paper also details how the journey has been influenced by technology, mode choice and the political landscape.
It also provides some insights into the future specifically highlighting key aspects relating to predict and provide and the impacts of disruptive technology.
Papers presented at the 38th International Southern African Transport Conference on "Disruptive transport technologies - is South and Southern Africa ready?" held at CSIR International Convention Centre, Pretoria, South Africa on 8th to 11th July 2019.