Paper presented at the 21st Annual South African Transport Conference 15 - 18 July 2002 "Towards building capacity and accelerating delivery", CSIR International Convention Centre, Pretoria, South Africa.
Transportation is a crucial element to every part of our society. However, the infrastructure needed to sustain our current system becomes increasingly expensive. Therefore, in order to conserve scarce financial resources, optimum utilisation must be achieved from existing
facilities. One way of achieving this is by increasing the capacity of existing facilities such as freeways. This can be done by either increasing the number of passengers per vehicle,
or to provide preferential treatment to high occupancy vehicles (HOV’s) on freeways. The
types of HOV’s applicable to South African conditions are taxis and buses. In a paper
published by the National Department of Transport (Moving South Africa (2)), it was stated that if dedicated infrastructure like HOV lanes (bus/taxi-lanes) can improve speed on dense corridors by 25 %, it could save between 5% and 20% of operating costs. Furthermore, between 1972 and 1996, the number of cars in South Africa increased by 72% (2). This phenomenon is a direct result of low car operating costs, ineffective land use patterns, inferior public transport alternatives, and a large infrastructure investment in roads. The fact that car costs are relatively low and likely to decline towards 2020, combined with incomes that are expected to rise, will ensure that more people will be able to afford cars in the future. Future forecasts suggest that car ownership will increase by a further 64% by 2020, which in turn will increase congestion and pollution considerably.