Ok Joburgers, so I know it’s been a rather grumpy week all around. Tuesday saw the roll out of the much resisted E-tolling system and then a sneaky fuel price hike on Wednesday just as an added sprinkling of Eina! to Joburg motorists.
So, you probably don’t really want to read this now. You might resist my optimistic let’s-make-lemonade offering, but let’s give it a go shall we?
Firstly, we need to steer away from our natural instinct to stab politics into every discussion. The E-tolling system is one that is already applied quite liberally across the globe. In comparison, the price per kilometer that we are being asked to contribute comes in at the lowest.
We also need to consider the benefits that we have already seen on roads that have been tolled (like the roads to Limpopo from Johannesburg). We have to acknowledge the privilege of having one of the best road systems in the world.
Most importantly though, there is that great big discussion that needs to be had surrounding better, sustainable public transport ethics that critically needs to be absorbed into our urban etiquette.
If the idea of forking out more cash to drive in the luxury of your own car has left you with more rage than responsibility this week, would the use of public transport be a more appealing, viable option? The public transport system has dramatically improved with the feeding BRT and Gautrain routes. There’s the new kids on the block in the form of tuk-tuks for ground not covered by taxis and even more metered taxi options currently presented to us.
I think the good-carbon-footprint mentality is not one that has been embraced by our citizens. I hear your fears and concerns, but, then, let’s take some intuitive beyond the frustration and get E-Tagged.
Need more factual sway? – Have a look at these infographics put together by Direct Axis for some more inspiration.