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CT to find funding alternatives for N1/N2 upgrades

The City says there has been no response to a letter the mayor sent to Sanral with this proposal.

FILE: The Western Cape High Court set aside the controversial N1 and N2 Winelands Toll project at the High Court in Cape Town on 30 September 2015. Picture: Rahima Essop/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The City of Cape Town says it is willing to work with South African National Road Agency Limited (Sanral) to find other ways to fund upgrades to the N1 and N2 highways, apart from tolling.

But the City says there's been no response yet to the Mayor's letter which was sent to the roads agency earlier this month.

Instead, Sanral has applied for leave to appeal a High Court judgment that has effectively blocked the N1/N2 Winelands Tolling project from going ahead, for now.

The roads agency has filed papers, applying for permission to challenge the judgment in the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein.

In legal papers, Sanral argues that the Western Cape High did not place sufficient weight on the City of Cape Town's failure to provide an explanation for its delay in taking legal action from September 2008 until March 2012.

Last month, the Western Cape High Court set aside the approvals that would enable Sanral to toll sections of the two highways.

The City's Brett Herron says the decision to appeal is disappointing.

"Shortly after the judgment, the Mayor wrote to the Sanral CEO and Sanral board and proposed that we establish a joint working group of professionals and engineers. We agree what upgrades are actually necessary and then we together find the solution for funding those upgrades."

But Sanral has previously said that if the project does not go ahead now, the highways won't be upgraded for at least two decades, if at all.