- The City of Cape Town has invested R17 million in new vehicles for Dial-a-Ride (DaR) passengers with special needs.
- The new fleet will see 13 new vehicles operational by mid-January.
- According to the City, the DaR service currently has 319 regular users and 2 300 eligible users who are transported on an ad hoc basis.
The City of Cape Town has invested R17 million in new vehicles for the Dial-a-Ride (DaR) service for commuters with special needs.
The new fleet would consist of 13 vehicles and set to be fully operational by mid-January.
The City's mayoral committee member responsible for Urban Mobility, Rob Quintas, visited the DaR depot in Parow Industrial earlier this week to view the new vehicles.
"Some of the vehicles are equipped with special technology for transporting commuters in wheelchairs. The fleet can accommodate 64 seated passengers with special needs and 56 passengers in wheelchairs per trip," said Quintas.
Apart from the specialised equipment to lift wheelchair users into the vehicle, the buses were also fitted with cameras and tracking devices so that the vehicles could be located at any time.
"This investment confirms the City's commitment to ensuring that we improve access to opportunities for those who need it most. Many people who are in wheelchairs, or those with impaired eyesight, cannot get to where they need to be and rely on the DAR service for assistance," said Quintas.
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The DaR service currently had 319 regular users and 2 300 eligible users who were transported on an ad hoc basis.
The City advised people to book in advance should they require the DaR service.
DaR operated from Monday to Sunday from 05:00 until 22:00.
"The last time that the City replaced the DaR fleet was in 2015... I am confident that the users will benefit from advanced technology and a more comfortable ride," said Quintas.
He also added that the DaR service would continue in its current form until 30 September 2023 when the City's contract with the DaR operator, HG Travelling Services, comes to an end.
"We are working on a long-term business plan for a sustainable service that is more cost-effective and able to assist more users, unfortunately, the demand for this service is much greater than what we can provide now, thus we have to investigate alternatives to improve access."
The City added that more details about the draft long-term business plan would be shared with DaR users and the public once ready.
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