With Cape Town’s daily traffic congestion showing no signs of going anywhere, the City is working to alleviate the problem through various interventions, including improving the implementation of flexible working hours and remote working within companies.

The City’s plans to ease traffic on our roads include working with private business to encourage consideration and implementation of work hours that allow employees to come and go during off-peak traffic hours, along with this companies are being encouraged to allow employees to work remotely on some days.

In a Cape Town Resilience Strategy draft published by the City in March, “sudden shocks” such as high traffic volumes are outlined as a major concern.

“Cape Town is the most congested city in South Africa, and the 48th most congested city in the world. This is due to a historic lack of substantial investment in public transport and, as a result, over-reliance on the private car. This means that as the population grows, so does vehicle ownership,” the draft reads.

There can be no arguing this point; locals experience traffic jams during their daily commutes without fail and there simply isn’t enough public transport – never mind reliable public transport – for the entire population.

“With 80% of the peak traffic currently made up of private car users, and peak travelling hours in the morning now recognized to be between 6am and 10am, this stress negatively affects productivity,” the City’s draft states.

Using “travel demand management interventions” the City has in place for its own staff, the City feels it is now in a position to show increased leadership on partnering to alleviate traffic congestion with other employers in Cape Town.

Part of this leadership will include:

– Working with partners like the local chamber of commerce, business associations, and large public and private sector employers to create a coalition of change;

– Developing tools to help employers understand the travel patterns of their employees and to assess the feasibility and acceptability of alternative travel arrangements;

– Obtaining increased commitments from employers to promote flexi-time work conditions and remote working models for employees, and to promote the use of car-pooling, public transport and non-motorised transport such as cycling.

Last year in June the City announced it will invest R481-million over the next three years to solve the congestion problem through better availability of transport alternatives such as the bus, train and cycling.

Part of this budget was allocated to six road project to ease congestion along Van Riebeeck Road, Langverwacht Road, Kommetjie Road, Ou Kaapse Weg, Broadway Boulevard, and Bosmansdam Road.

What the City will do next to tackle the problem of congestion and provide more and higher quality alternative transport is yet to be seen.

See the Strategy Draft that is open for public comment here.

Picture: Pexels

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