Wednesday, 19 August 2015

How far is close?

This afternoon a Cape Town friend posted on Facebook asking us, his Jo'burg friends, to recommend a venue for a teambuild he's hosting. He specifies "The nearer to the airports/Sandton area, the better" and "Must also have about 10km of trails or small dirt roads on the estate".

A couple of friends recommended Avianto, a venue regularly used for adventure sprint races, trail runs, mountain bike rides and the like. They have the infrastructure to accommodate his large group and the venue is pleasant.

One of the friends, with a connection to the venue, replies "...we are close to lanseria airport, and not far from Sandton".

While I agree that they're well placed for access from Lanseria, they're not anywhere near Sandton. I asked Google Maps to draw me a driving route from Sandton Gautrain Station to Avianto. The optimal option is around 32km. While that doesn't sound too far, when you factor in traffic... It will certainly take over an hour to get from one place to the next - around the same time it takes me to drive the 124km from home to Parys.

A friend recently took two hours to drive the 12 kilometres from Cresta to Sandton CBD!

Let's take a look at a map with OR Tambo, Sandton, Lanseria and Avianto indicated.

There's a Gautrain from OR Tambo to Sandton... but no venues that quite fit the bill (depending really on what my friend wants to do on the property).

Lanseria is a very good proposition and there are transport services that can be booked to transport arrivals to Avianto.

But to fly in to ORT, take the Gautrain to Sandton and then drive from there to Avianto... Ja, they may as well come to Parys. Only 1h30 from ORT airport and on the Vaal.

This geographical blackhole reminds me of when I did the English Teaching course two years ago. The lady says to me that the venue is in Randburg. I asked for the address.

I remember telling her that she possibly paid her water bill to the greater Randburg muncipality but that Ruimsig was nowhere near Randburg (20km apart)!

There's close and there's close. When you've got traffic lights out, loadshedding, accidents and overloaded, congested roads, 10-kilometres is far, especially considering the time spent on the road.

Close, for me, is 5-15 minutes. OK is 30 minutes and 45-min to an hour is far.

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