The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) is significantly increasing its capital spending over the Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) with a budget exceeding R50 billion for rolling stock and infrastructure investments.
PRASA Group CEO Hishaam Emeran announced this during the Southern African Railway Association’s two-day conference in Johannesburg as reported by SA News. The agency aims to support the modernisation of the passenger rail network and the implementation of turnaround plans with this substantial budget.
PRASA has made substantial progress in recovering passenger rail services, with 26 of the 40 corridors restored, serving over 19 million passengers. The agency has spent R3.6 billion in the current fiscal year for corridor recovery and created over 6,000 jobs. This investment is not only rebuilding the passenger rail network but also modernising the entire system.
Under PRASA’s ambitious capital program for the next three years, projects include:
- Rolling stock modernisation.
- Depot modernisation.
- Station modernisation.
- Infrastructure upgrades.
- Electrical systems improvements.
- Signalling and telecommunications enhancements.
- Digital system integration.
PRASA is taking measures to address challenges within supply chain management and capacity constraints in capital projects. The agency has introduced high-tech Electric Motor Units (EMUs) for recovered passenger rail services, incorporating features like CCTV cameras, automatic doors, air-conditioning, and advanced safety measures designed with commuter safety in mind. These trains are manufactured in Springs, Gauteng, by Gibela.
The depot modernisation program will involve intelligent fencing, CCTV systems, and integrated security measures. PRASA is also revitalising the signalling system, introducing modern telecommunications in line with the European Train Control System to enhance signalling safety.
PRASA’s commitment to these projects reflects its vision for an ambitious and transformative modernisation of the passenger rail network, using the allocated budget to bring this vision to life.
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