Around 200 rigid buses, 180 articulated buses and 765 midibuses will be required for eThekwini’s new GO!Durban integrated rapid public transport network over the next five years, says eThekwini Transport Authority head Thami Manyathi.
In addition, 250 commuter buses will be required as part of the replacement programme for the city’s existing public transport contracts.
Manyathi says the bus delivery timeline is estimated to kick off in the second half of 2018, starting with the fleet to be deployed on the C3 route, running from Pinetown through New Germany and KwaDabeka to Bridge City, KwaMashu.
He says the city will be advertising these tenders “within the next few weeks”.
Owing to the nature and size of the tenders, an extended submission period will be provided to give businesses the opportunity to submit tenders that meet the city council’s transformation and local investment objectives.
The next tranche of tenders will cater for the C9 route from Bridge City via Phoenix Industrial and Cornubia to Umhlanga, as well as the fleet to be used in the inner city.
Manyathi explains that the magnitude of the R23-billion GO!Durban project should serve to strengthen the local manufacturing sector. It should also link components suppliers to bus producers in order to achieve enterprise development and grow domestic capacity to maintain the proposed GO!Durban fleet.
Since 2014, when construction of the GO!Durban network began, close to R1.2-billion has been made available to subcontractors, almost R372-million injected into enterprise development and R526-million spent on 155 business beneficiaries, with some 22 500 job opportunities created, says eThekwini supply chain management head Andre Petersen.