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Wednesday Feb 05, 2014

Hout Bay commuters in a tizz over MyCiTi roll-out

The Hout Bay Civic Association has raised concerns about MyCiTi operations in Hangberg which are expected to start later this month, and whether commuters with Golden Arrow clipcards will be able to use them on MyCiTi buses.

The association was considering legal action if the Hangberg community's needs were not addressed, association spokesman Roscoe Jacobs said.

He said concerns included whether Golden Arrow buses and minibus taxis would be recalled once MyCiTi was operational there, and if Golden Arrow clipcard holders would be able to have the remaining value of their cards converted to travel points on the MyCiTi myconnect cards.

'The fact that only MyCiti buses will operate on the Cape Town-Hout Bay route will mean they have a monopoly. What guarantee do we have that prices won't drastically increase, and why can't we have the choice between taxis and buses?' he said.

Golden Arrow Bus service spokeswoman Bronwen Dyke has since said commuters will be refunded.

'We will give the full amount back to commuters who had monthly tickets. We now become an operating company so we are not totally out of the picture,' she said.

Jacobs said the city had failed to roll out MyCiti myconnect cards on February 1 as promised, and demanded that a collection desk be set up in Hangberg for workers and students to obtain their cards.

In a statement on January 21, mayco member for transport Brett Herron said: 'The City of Cape Town is providing free myconnect cards to all potential passengers in Hout Bay. Everyone aged four years and over needs their own myconnect card, loaded with money, to travel on MyCiTi buses.'

The myconnect card is preloaded with 30 mover points and commuters have been advised to collect cards at their local library.

But Jacobs said the city had failed to tell commuters that the MyCiTi desk in the Hangberg Library operated only during library hours.

'We also want taxis to continue operating to give us an alternative if prices go up or MyCiTi drivers strike,' he said.

Mayco member for Transport Brett Herron said free myconnect cards were made available at the public libraries at Hangberg and Hout Bay, and the Imizamo Yethu sports field.

'The Imizamo Yethu sports field was selected as a central area for the deployment of a MyCiTi bus as this was a central point for the community.

'We have arranged for the MyCiTi bus to alternate, over weekends, between the sports field at Imizamo Yethu and the Hangberg Library, until the end of February. It will be located at the Hangberg Library on Saturdays and at the Imizamo Yethu sports field on Sundays,' Herron said.

MyCiTi will operate on two routes in Hout Bay, one to Hangberg and one to Imizamo Yethu, from February 15.

Cape Times


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