'make more yards available' ct driving instructors bemoan lack of practice space
© Provided by CapeTalk Driving instructors say there aren’t enough practice yards for learner drivers in Cape Town The practice yard in Philippi has been closed for several months after the plot was privately sold
'make more yards available' ct driving instructors bemoan lack of practice space
© Provided by CapeTalk Image: © michaeljung /123rf.com

Some driving instructors in Cape Town are having difficulties getting enough practice time for their students after the closure of the Joe Gqabi K53 practice yard in Philippi.

Andre Swart, the owner of Andre’s Driving School in Athlone, says the closure of the Philippi practice yard has had a negative impact on business.

He says driving instructors in the area now have to travel to Parow or Ottery to find another practice yard, which is often overcrowded.

According to Swart, the yard in Philippi has been closed since February this year after the previous owner apparently sold the plot to a local football club.

Learner drivers spend time in the yard to practice their parking maneuvers such as alley-docking and parallel parking in preparation for their driving licence tests.

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Swart says learner drivers now spend more time travelling to yards that are further away and waiting their turn than they do actually practicing their parking.

He’s urged the City of Cape Town to open a practice yard which caters to learner drivers in Athlone, Manenberg, Hanover Park, Landsdowne and Phillipi.

“At the moment, there is nothing for us, no space and the City can’t help us”, Swart tells CapeTalk.

It cost a lot more money because now it takes 2 hours of time and pay an hour for parking area as well. And the yard is very full. And it takes time for a learner to wait for a space to [practice] parking.

Andre Swart, Owner -Andre’s Driving School

We would like to open the yard again. It’s very cramped up in some yards and we have to travel far to get to a yard.

Andre Swart, Owner -Andre’s Driving School

We need to get a yard that is closer to Lansdowne central for us in Athlone, Manenberg, Hanover Park, Landsdowne and Phillipi.

Andre Swart, Owner -Andre’s Driving School

Another local driving instructor Eugene Matthews says there is a shortage of practice yards across Cape Town overall.

“Make more yards available! Make more yards available”, he stresses.

We don’t have a parking lot in town that we can make use of but we have a lot of business out in town, so that’s a bit resrtcitive.

Eugene Matthews, Driving instructor

We can have our poles in the car and everything but it’s not as close to what the testing stations’ yard setup is. And once we get to the yard, we are so many cars in every yard… the waiting is so long… we sit in the car and talk.

Eugene Matthews, Driving instructor

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