Metrorail launches information service

2012-09-17 12:00

Cape Town - Commuters in the Western Cape can look forward to more information from Metrorail with the launch of a mobile information service.

The rail operator has partnered with GoMetro to provide commuters with information on train times, schedule changes and service updates issued form the Metrorail control centre.

"It is based on improving the efficiency and moving away from a static timetable and moving toward a live timetable that is going to assist the flow of information," Mthuthuzeli Swartz, Metrorail regional manager told News24.

The GoMetro website features a train fare schedule as well as general information and the service will also be available on mobile devices.

The information should help commuter with travelling on the public transport system, and Swartz said that after the testing phase, it will be rolled out on a national basis.


"Although it is now happening in the Western Cape, we are going to make sure that we share this information with our counterparts in other regions.

"The thing is you start testing an application and before you roll it out nationally, you want to make sure that all the kinks in the system have been sorted out. That is why we have been encouraging our people and our users to use it," said Swartz.

There are mobile sites like that already offer train service information in the Western Cape and users can access information on the Metrorail website for traffic information on the train service, but the new platform seeks to make it easier for the user to access the information.

Metrorail service levels are a thorny issue in Cape Town and the company indicated that increased access to information was part of the package of improvements for commuters.

"The improving the train service and the product offering of Metrorail is a multifaceted issue. The on time performance is not so much related to the timetable, but the timetable reflects on the possibilities or definitions from on time performance.

"The reliability of the train service itself although linked, it is an independent aspect. The trains we are giving to our technicians in order to provide a reliable service is also a separate item. But holistically, all of these are elements that we have mentioned in our 'Programme of Action'," Swartz said.

Cable theft

Cable theft continues to be a problem for Metrorail as it compromises the firm's ability to deliver an efficient and reliable service for around two million travellers per day, and the new platform should give users information on service disruptions timeously.

Trains in SA are a far cry from those in developed countries and Swartz said that Metrorail was committed to a continued improvement in the service.

"So in improving the service there are a lot of things we've got to improve: We've got to improve on on time performance; we've got to improve on information; we've got to improve on cleanliness; we've got to improve on security - it's a total offering.

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  • narike.lintvelt.9 - 2012-09-17 13:08

    I look fwd to seeing improvements

  • johann.spies - 2012-09-17 13:17

    Hierdie diens is nog vol foute. Om te illustreer: Probeer op die noordelike lyn (Stellenbosch, Wellington, Strand) die tye te kry tussen Du Toit Stasie en Brackenfell. Om dit te kan doen, moet die gebruiker weet daar is twee roetes in gebruik en twee verskillende navrae doen.

      justin.coetzee.10 - 2012-09-18 13:07

      Hierdie diens is nog in "early-stage development". Ons werk nou op n opsie om twee lyne se tye to kry. Ons het jou feedback gekry op Go Metro, en ons werk om die feature intesluit. Baie dankie vir die kommentaar Johan. Justin van Go Metro

  • Hein Van Wyk - 2012-09-17 13:20

    now every one can go and see how late they are going to be

  • Danie - 2012-09-17 19:46

    The feedback box keeps crashing if you submit feedback. Only seems to work off an IP address.... very raw still. Thinking it would be much much better if they also just published a raw data feed so that various 3rd party developers could give us a great app, and maybe also one that pulls in data from other transport services.

      justin.coetzee.10 - 2012-09-18 13:10

      Hi Danie, Thank you for indicating that our feedback box is crashing - we are working on fixing it now. Thank you for the comments. It is still very early days for this service still - we want to get it out to the commuters and then continually improve it from there. 3rd party developers can get in touch with us to help us roll out apps much faster than what we are able to do by ourselves - are you offering to assist us? We are also talking to the City of Cape Town to get the MyCiti service and Golden Arrow information integrated into our platform. Thank you for the comments - this is the commuter's app, so we are working on improving it step by step.

      justin.coetzee.10 - 2012-09-18 13:40

      Hi Danie. The feedback box is up-and-running again.... Thank you for highlighting that. Justin

  • tana.pressly - 2012-10-08 20:35

    What our trains looked like before the mid-90's, Metrorail should be ashamed of their mismanagment ans lack of control!

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