Activities at the Bridge City mixed-used property development north of Durban are gathering momentum.
To date, 65% of the 53 ha development area has been sold to a mix of public and private sector investors, while 360 000 m2 of bulk is still available for purchase in Bridge City.
“Our vision for Bridge City is one that combines a mix of public sector facilities, services and infrastructure with a range of private investment opportunities. At its heart, it will have an intermodal transport system that links the areas of Phoenix and Inanda,” Tongaat Hulett Developments development executive Brian Ive said.
Work is set to start on several new developments, including a petrol filling station (PFS) retail facility and a mixed-use development to the value of R220-million, this month.
The environmental-impact assessment for the first phase PFS is under way while construction work on the second phase of this mixed-use development is expected to start towards the end of this year.
“Construction of the Dr Pixley ka Isaka Seme Memorial Hospital, a 500-bed regional State facility, is proceeding well. Now that the structure is complete, contractors are focusing on finishing the interior of the building ahead of an envisaged opening in 2019.”
Earthworks have also been completed for a 150-bed private hospital. Work on the top structure is scheduled to begin this month and the hospital is expected to open at the end of 2018.
Bridge City is expected to attract upwards of R10-billion in investment once it has been completed.
“It is expected to create thousands of construction jobs while also facilitating a range of skills and enterprise development opportunities across a plethora of sectors.”
Ive noted that Bridge City was particularly attractive to businesses as all sites were fully serviced and ready for development.
The Inanda, Ntuzuma and KwaMashu (INK) area has the largest residential concentration of about 800 000 people in the eThekwini region, ensuring that Bridge City is likely to have one of the largest impacts on improving the livelihoods of residents and boosting the metro economy.
“Bridge City completely redefines how people will live, work and play in formerly neglected and marginalised townships. Through the creation of job opportunities, residential accommodation and lifestyle choices, Bridge City will have a major economic impact on both the immediate INK area and its surrounds,” Ive said.
A deal that is near conclusion will see the construction of 348 affordable housing units and will play a key role in attracting new entrants into the retail property development space.
Through the creation of a dynamic mixed-use precinct, the reduction of Management Association levies for residential use and reductions in transfer duties by government for entry-level buyers, he said that more property owners were also likely to enter the as yet underinvested township real estate market.
Ive pointed out that the eThekwini metropolitan municipality was finalising the investment of R84.5-million in six sites at Bridge City.
Five of these are in the town centre, three are earmarked for social housing and two for affordable housing.
The sixth site, bought by the municipality and located within the Business Estate precinct, will be developed into a business incubator.