Gautrain Rapid Rail Link, South Africa
Location: South Africa
LeighFisher supported the South African province of Gauteng in developing the Gautrain Rapid Rail Link – a high-speed (160-kilometer-per-hour) link between the main commercial centres, suburban hubs, and the international airport.
Gauteng province contains the country’s largest city, Johannesburg, and its capital, Pretoria. From its gold-mining origins, Gauteng is now the commercial and industrial heart of the country generating a third of its gross domestic product (GDP), and 7% of African GDP, from just 1.4% of the country’s land area. With 12 million residents and rapid growth in car ownership, congestion has become a major problem. Gautrain operates over an 80-kilometer network serving 10 stations. It was the first standard gauge railway in sub-Saharan Africa and, at US$4 billion, is the largest Public-Private Partnership (PPP) project delivered in Africa.
Throughout the project development process – from initial concept development in 2000, through detailed design and PPP procurement, to successful service introduction in 2010 – we produced a rail technology appraisal that provided technical support and included in particular rail demand and revenue forecasting. In early project development, a wide range of alternative routes, station locations, and rail technologies were considered.
Using our demand forecasting models, we worked with land use planners, engineers, and rail operators to define a network that met the province's socioeconomic objectives, provide a good economic return, was affordable to the Grantor and was bankable to a private sector concessionaire. PPP was the selected method of procurement and we supported the Grantor, in the structuring of the concession, preparation of bid documentation, and evaluation of bids from international consortia. The successful bidder announced in 2006 was Bombela, comprising a consortium of Bouygues, Bombardier, and South Africa construction company Murray & Roberts. The French RATP Group, under contract to Bombela, is now operating the service.
Following the successful, phased introduction of the service between 2010 and 2012, LeighFisher is now assessing rail operations and costing with the province and Gautrain Management Agency to assess future possible extensions to the network.
- With our help Gauteng province has brought the Gautrain from concept to successful operation
- We are now supporting the assessment of potential extensions to the Gautrain network
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