Transport MEC: Commuters must adjust to #EcoMobilityMonth

Ismail Vadi says while there’s been some sense of discomfort & mixed views, he feels this will improve.

FILE. Sandton traffic. Picture: Christa van der Walt/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Gauteng Transport MEC Ismail Vadi says he expects commuters in Sandton to adjust over the next few days to partial road closures, and use alternative means of transport, as part of the EcoMobility Festival.

The initiative kicked off on Monday and aims to reduce traffic congestion and get commuters to abandon their private cars for the month of October.

Dedicated public transport lanes, walkways and bicycle lanes have been put in place.

Vadi says while there's been some sense of discomfort and mixed views, he feels this will improve.

"I think it's going to get better once the cultural items come on track; once people begin to see the fun side of it the pressure will ease off and we'll learn some experience. But I think we're going to have to provoke some sort of change in city behaviour in terms of transport."

WATCH: 702 takes a Segway tour of the Sandton CBD during day one of the #EcoMobilityFestival.

MOTORISTS SWAP CARS FOR RUNNING SHOES

This morning, many have abandoned their cars and put on their running shoes, and are making their way to the buses and Gautrain Station.

One man has even passed cyclists on his Segway along the dedicated lanes.

While traffic on Maude Street seems to be free flowing, West Street is bumper to bumper with two motorists beeping at a bus full of passengers, trying to make its way out the jam.

There are also EcoMobility officials on standby at the major intersections with a very strong Metro Police presence.

WATCH: EWN _ takes you through the streets of Sandton to help you understand how the campaign will affect you._

HEATWAVE ADDS TO FRUSTRATIONS

At the same time, some Sandton commuters say they are battling the current heatwave to walk home from work today as part of the EcoMobility festival.

While there were a few signage glitches in the system during peak hour traffic this morning, the Transport Department says it's ready for more people to abandon their cars.

Some commuters say they chose walking over driving today and they have enjoyed the trip more on foot.

"As long as they keep it up and it's well controlled then it's fine."

"It was my first day, as I normally drive but the vibe is good and I enjoyed it."

WATCH: Commuters heading into Sandton were left uneasy on the first day of the #EcoMobilityFestival.