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Gautrain agency gets thumbs-up to seek new partner for post-2026 period

Gautrain agency gets thumbs-up to seek new partner for post-2026 period Picture: Nadine Hutton Bloomberg

Gautrain agency gets thumbs-up to seek new partner for post-2026 period Picture: Nadine Hutton Bloomberg

Published Nov 5, 2023


The Gautrain Management Agency (GMA) has been given the thumbs-up to go to market and advertise a request for proposals (RFP) for a new partner for the Gautrain system after 2026.

The approval was granted recently by the Gauteng Executive Council. The current Gautrain concession agreement comes to an end in March 2026.

“The agency welcomes the decision by the Executive Council and has already commenced with the plan to market the Post 2026 Gautrain Project, and the advertisement notice for the RFP is scheduled to go live today,” said GMA chief executive William Dachs.

“The new delivery partner will operate, maintain, modernise, innovate, and upgrade the current Gautrain system so that the GMA can continue to provide a safe and efficient public transport service.”

He said the Gautrain was the first and only rapid rail network – and the first Public-Private Partnership (PPP) of its size – in South Africa.

“It is a strategic asset valued at R45 billion, and once the current concession expires at the end of its 19.5-year term in March 2026, the costs of establishing this long-term asset will have been paid off, allowing the Post 2026 Gautrain Project to reap the economic benefits,” said Dachs.

He said although it was planned and implemented as a transport project, the Gautrain is an economic development project focusing on reaching objectives of stimulating economic growth and job creation, promoting investment and new development.

Dachs said the Post 2026 Gautrain Project will further unlock economic potential and opportunities.

“It will also present an opportunity to build on a highly functional, world-class system and to rethink the Gautrain business model, ensuring that the system not only responds to the current challenges, but further cements operational and financial sustainability in the long term,” Dachs said.

“The Gautrain will become an even more integral part of people’s daily lives and a catalyst for economic development, growth, and economic recovery in the province. Kick-starting a procurement process for a new delivery partner will ensure a smooth and timeous transition from the existing delivery partner to the new contract, with no service disruption post March 2026.”

The anticipated economic and social impact of the Post-2026 Gautrain Project includes:

– Transforming spaces through transit-oriented developments at Gautrain station precincts;

– Unlocking retail, business and government services opportunities within the station precincts;

– Re-stimulating local production through the manufacturing of local train-sets and bus fleets;

– Introducing new generation train-sets fitted with the latest modern technology and passenger amenities, such as Wi-Fi, on-board information displays, charging points, etc.;

– Introducing dynamic pricing;

– Contributing R288bn to the South African economy over the term of the Post 2026 Gautrain Project, which will contribute to a R124bn gain for households;

– Creating approximately 22 000 direct jobs and 52 000 induced jobs;

– A total of 26 000 fewer cars on Gauteng roads every day;

– A total of 400 000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions savings;

– Spending of R10bn on procurement from small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs);

– Investing in future skills such as data scientists, cyber-security and machine learning, to keep up with technological changes.

The Star