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Challenges in Achieving Universal Access to Transport Services in South African Cities

  • Roger Behrens
  • Tristan Görgens
Chapter

Abstract

Transport is a particular focus of the UN’s ‘New Urban Agenda’, and universal access has been explicitly included. A focus on accessibility has been an important feature in the planning for and rollout of the South African Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) systems—which is also the focus of government spending and policy work over the last decade in the road-based transport sector. However, when mapping progress of the rollout against the ideal of universal access, it is clear that the rollout of BRT systems will remain slow and in a limited number of corridors. There is therefore, the need to introduce complementary initiatives that work with the main carrier of public transport passengers in South African (and many African) cities, the unscheduled minibus-taxis, in order to increase their accessibility for people with disabilities. Such complementary initiatives could take the form of accessible rank infrastructure and passenger wayfinding, accessible fleet renewal schemes, and financial incentives to provide more accessible services within a long overdue reformed public transport subsidy policy. Success in implementing such complementary initiatives would be of interest as an addition to the wider planning to implement the ‘New Urban Agenda’, particularly in the ‘Global South’.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Transport Studies, Department of Civil EngineeringUniversity of Cape TownCape TownSouth Africa
  2. 2.Policy and Strategy Unit, Department of the PremierWestern Cape GovernmentCape TownSouth Africa

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