(Published in METRO, 29/10/15)
The municilality will be investing R76m over the next three years in upgrading of bulk infrastructure in Hammarsdale. This is to improve capacity to accommodate the influx of recent interest shown in both industrial and business developments in the area.
Hammarsdale, situated west of Durban, has become the key focus area for the eThekwini Municipality for attracting new industry to the region as Durban and Pinetown reach their industrial development capacity.
“Hammarsdale remains strategically located in context of the Durban to Johannesburg N3 Corridor growth initiative to the province and has the opportunity to play vital role in the provision of industrial land,” said Shunnon Tulsiram, Head of the Economic Development and Investment Promotion Unit. “It remains the only area within close proximity to the N3 where there is 151 hectares of serviced industrial-zoned land available for immediate development.
“Opportunities exist for manufacturing, logistics warehousing, and industrial park developments.”
“Investigations in the upgrading of the Hammarsdale Waste Water Sanitation Works and widening of Main Road 385 are currently being completed. Contracts are already underway in the renovations and upgrade of the Hammarsdale CBD area, providing an improved public environment, new public transport and informal traders’ facilities.”
Senior Project Manager, Peter Gilmore, added that, “Hammarsdale Junction, a multi-million rand investment by Eris Property Group is also progressing well. This retail shopping centre which is due for opening in June 2013 will be the first development to occupy space in the adjacent Mpumalanga New Town Centre.” The town centre which is collaboration of eThekwini Municipality’s Economic Development Unit, Eris Property Group and the Ingonyama Trust Board in partnership with National Treasury and the Department of Traditional Affairs and Local Government, it to set new standards for social and economic transformation of the Hammarsdale area.
Other local land owners and developers are also setting the pace for further developments. Developers have recently acquired a portion of Bartlett Estate and are working with the respective Municipal departments to create a new light industrial and logistics precinct, known as Keystone Park. With excellent N3 access, Keystone Park will provide 115 hectares of light (clean) industrial and logistics land in a modern, landscaped and well-designed precinct. The precinct, which will have all infrastructure fully installed, embodies green development principles. The R4-billion project will create around 5000 jobs once developed. About 3500 construction jobs will be created during the development of Keystone Park.
Deputy Mayor and Chairperson of the Economic Development Committee, Cllr Nomvuzo Shabalala said, “the investment by the City acts as catalysts to development in the area, thereby creating employment and bringing better access to facilities to people living in there. They will no longer need to travel long distances for work, and to shop.
This is in line with government’s policy to prioritise rural development.”