New, better station on the right track

2015-09-01 06:00
A commuter gets off the train at Rosebank station. Renovations at the station are almost complete.


A commuter gets off the train at Rosebank station. Renovations at the station are almost complete. PHOTO: TIYESE JERANJI

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In less than a week commuters who use the Rosebank train station will be proud of being users of this station as it has recently undergone upgrades. Though the work was contracted to be completed by the end of this month, it seems all is on track to finish sooner than expected.

The station has been undergoing renovations for the past three months at a cost of R1.9m.

The station had been dilapidated for a long time. The toilets needed repainting and the passenger shelters became filthy over the years.

All the passenger shelters and toilets, the ticket office and the subway have been given new touches. Two ATMs will also be added.

Henry Masimla, manager at Prasa Corporate Real Estate Solutions, says the upgrades are being done as part of a national initiative to improve station environments.

“The programme is meant to address minor station upgrades to effect changes that would bring about noticeable and lasting improvement in the environment at small and medium-sized stations. The improvements are initiated to address customer and public areas to improve their perception of the chosen stations. The targeted areas relate to improvement of security, access and egress and overall appearance of the station. This includes lighting, security features, passenger information, staff facilities – ticketing offices, passenger shelters, ablution facilities, paintwork to subways and bridges. However, the implementation of these improvement areas largely depends on budget available at a particular point in time – meaning that not all aspects of the improvement may be done in one financial year,” says Masimla.

Commuters say this is something they have been waiting for because everything at the station looked old.

James van Wyk, a commuter, says the upgrades were long overdue.

“The passenger shelters look all bright and beautiful. I can’t wait to see the complete work. We really appreciate the upgrade; now they must just work on the train schedules and improve our safety in the trains. It will also motivate us to use the trains all the time as we won’t be confronted with dirt and the filthy walls,’’ he says.

Jonathan Hobday, chairperson of the Rosebank and Mowbray Civic Association, says it is delighted that Metrorail is upgrading the station.

“The station, which was in a very dilapidated state, has been given a marked makeover, with a comprehensive re-painting and a major re-fitting of the toilets. The upgrade will greatly enhance the travel experience of commuters as well as provide a general uplift for the well-being of the whole area and community,” he says. “We believe that having attractive and well-managed railway stations is also essential to the ongoing fight against crime, especially in an area so well-populated by students and schoolchildren. However, some of the gardens and other open spaces at the stations could do with some attention – they are overgrown and unsightly, detracting from the good work that is being done.”

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