Public Transport

Growing congestion on national roads, the need to limit emissions and the will for social inclusion have recently seen a big push in South Africa to provide sustainable and cost effective public transport. The main challenge, from an economic perspective, is to ensure that the proposed public transport interventions are economically efficient. To this end an economic cost benefit analysis needs to be conducted. To do this, costs must be compared to benefits. The costs are relatively straightforward – these are the capital and operating costs of the proposed public transport system. The challenge is to specify and measure the benefits. These benefits are, in turn, direct, indirect, quantifiable and unquantifiable.


  • Some of the direct quantifiable benefits include higher travelling speeds (and therefore reduced travelling times) for both people switching to the public transport as well as those remaining in other forms of transport, safer journeys, lower travel costs and a reduction in vehicle emissions.

  • Some of the broader economic benefits include the contribution to economic development and growth, agglomeration benefits, labour mobility, land use changes and positive property impacts.

  • Some of the unquantifiable impacts include an improved ambiance in commuting, option value where people have a choice of transport mode, reduction in the stress of commuting, lower traffic noise and improved accessibility.


Completed Projects


  • Economic narrative of the Gauteng Rapid Rail Integrated Network Expansion. With Pegasys Consulting, for the Gautrain Management Agency, 2019/20.

  • Working towards a determination of the cost and payment of transport in South Africa. For SANRAL, 2015-16.

  • The Blue Downs Rail Link. With GIBB Africa for PRASA, 2015.

  • Economic planning of the Rea Vaya BRT system Phase 1C in Johannesburg. With GIBB[A1]  for Rea Vaya and the City of Johannesburg, 2013.

  • Economic evaluation of the Rea Vaya BRT system phases 1A and 1B in Johannesburg. With ITS Engineers for the City of Johannesburg and UNDP, 2012.

  • Determination of the economic viability of a national implementation of an Integrated Public Transport Network. With Pegasys for the Department of Transport, 2011.

  • An assessment of the economic efficiency of the City of Cape Town’s proposed integrated rapid transport system. Part of the Pendulum consortium for the City of Cape Town, 2008-9.

  • Assessment of the economic viability of the restructuring of public transport in the Western Cape, 2007. Prepared for the Department of Transport, Western Cape Provincial Administration.