Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Cycling in South Africa

I am visiting family in South Africa at the moment and have been noting what provision is made for cyclists and pedestrians. Sadly active transport is mostly neglected or under provided. This is very sad for a country where the majority is captive to public or active transport. Unfortunately this is a universal problem - where budgets are tight, active transport is the mode that gets its infrastructure budget cut.

It has been good though to see some of the excellent provision that has been made. Most notable are the 3m wide shared pathways provided parallel to the coastal highway in Port Elizabeth and Plettenberg Bay although I didn't see one cyclist using them. The upgrade of the Durban beachfront provides a fantastically wide shared pathway along the beachfront that is well used by pedestrians and recreational cyclists. I will be spending some time in Cape Town and will have a look at the active transport infrastructure they delivered for the World Cup and as part of their Bus Rapid Transit corridors they are rolling out.
Here is a photo of the 3m wide coastal pathway in Port Elizabeth. It stretches all the way along the coast from south of PE to The industrial areas and port north of the city.

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