Cape Town -
The City of Cape Town will be making urgent adjustments to some of its MyCiTi buses after commuters complained that the lack of air conditioning made their commute unpleasant.
The new units, which will be retro-fitted to about half of the MyCiTi fleet, will cost the city about R4 million.
Brett Herron, mayoral committee member for transport, said the city had decided to forgo air conditioning because of the ongoing operating and downtime maintenance costs.
“While it was acknowledged that on extremely hot days the temperature within the passenger cabin would be relatively high, it was anticipated that the buses’ natural ventilation, augmented with ducted fans, would provide sufficient airflow and would alleviate the discomfort experienced by passengers.”
But after several complaints from passengers, Herron said the city acknowledged that they were experiencing “a high degree of discomfort, particularly when ambient temperatures exceed the mid to high twenties”.
Herron said the city would, as an “immediate response”, fit a large number of the buses with a forced ventilation unit that would draw in fresh air. The city had procured about 80 of these units at a cost of R30 000 per unit.
The city would also install 10 air-conditioning units, at a cost of R160 000 each, on selected buses to test their efficiency and cost implications. It will take at least four weeks for this to happen.
“Unfortunately, (other than these two measures), we will have to tolerate some discomfort on part of the fleet for the rest of this season as we cannot address the whole fleet in time.”
Meanwhile, the city has warned of road deviations and lane restrictions along Koeberg Road because of the expansion of the MyCiTi service along the West Coast. Motorists in Table View, Milnerton and Plattekloof will be affected.