Saturday, November 14, 2009

Gautrain Operation Set to Begin Late

The Gautrain regional train system will not be operational until half-way through the World Cup tournament, according to Gautrain officials. The regional system had planned to have the first leg of its system operational between Johannesburg, Pretoria, and OR Tambo International Airport in time for the 2010 World Cup, beginning in June.

Organisers of South Africa 2010 had hoped fans would arrive at Johannesburg airport and board a high-speed train to the commercial centre.

Instead, most football fans' first experience will now be a taxi or a shuttle bus and more than likely a sizable traffic jam, our correspondent says.

For the past three years builders have been working on the Gautrain - an ambitious $3.5bn (£2bn) project linking Johannesburg, Pretoria and the airport.

Contractors, under pressure to complete before next June's deadline, demanded an additional $180m (£107m) to accelerate their work and hit the target.

SA World Cup rail project delayed
November 9, 2009