Project Pinboard, January 2015

January 15th, 2015, Published in Articles: Vector

Three new cities for Gauteng

Gauteng premier David Makhura says the West Rand and Sedibeng could soon become the locations for South Africa’s first post-Apartheid cities. He expects the development to be announced during the 2015 State of the Province address. The gigantic projects will be completed over five years and the Gauteng Human Settlement Plan will direct investments in bulk infrastructure and shape the public transport and economic development plans. Makhura said migration into Gauteng strains housing in the province. The 2011 census survey showed that the province’s population grew to 12,2-million, up from 7-million in the previous survey in 1996. Only 56% of this population was born in the province. The planned cities will house 20 000, 30 000 and 50 000 units respectively.

R10-million tourism investment yields 10 000 “job days”

Following government’s R2,4-billion investment in the advancement and expansion of tourism and  nature conservation in SA’s national parks, South African National Parks (SANParks) launched seven new chalets, a new entrance gate and two staff houses at the Agulhas National Park. The R10-million project has yielded over 10 000 “job days”, according toSANParks general manager: infrastructure and special projects Antionet van Wyk. Some 80% of this work went to electrical contractors and plumbing specialists, she said. She noted that the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) employs around 450 people in the area. Agulhas National Park was proclaimed in 1999 to conserve the indigenous fynbos and is one of the seven new national parks created in the country over the past two decades.

Transnet signs deal with Chinese manufacturer

Transnet and CSR Zhuzhou Electric Locomotive from China signed a historic memorandum of understanding (MoU) as part of President Zuma’s visit to that country to facilitate trade with SA. The MoUis said to pave the way for Transnet to conclude agreements with the locomotives manufacturer to build manufacturing facilities locally to produce and maintain electric locomotives and rail equipment and components. According to the agreement, Transnet and CSR will establish a research and development facility and manufacturing plant;develop business opportunities for China in Africa; establish a training centre in this country and set up a refurbishment and manufacturing plant, among others.Most of the 1064 locomotives commissioned by Transnet last year will be built at the Pretoria and Durban plant of its engineering, manufacturing and rolling stock maintenance division, Transnet Engineering. CSR will enter into a joint venture with Transnet and the entity will be based in SA.

Gautrain to be expanded

A consortium of transaction advisors has been appointed to conduct a feasibility study for the possible rapid rail extensions to the Gautrain network. Gauteng MEC for transport Dr. Ismail Vadi said the study is meant to inform the decision to proceed with the Gautrain extensions and the preferred routes that should be developed.   The consultants are SMEC Consortium, include SMEC South Africa, DLA Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr and Deloitte. The possible rapid rail extensions to the network follow from the recently completed Gauteng 25-Year Integrated Transport Master Plan (ITMP25), which provides a long-term plan to ensure integration of transport with spatial patterns. Once the feasibility study is completed in the latter part of 2015, the funding models will be presented to the provincial and national treasuries for budgetary consideration.

Development to house 100 000

The construction of a new city in north-eastern Johannesburg is scheduled to commence early this year with Shanghai Zendai Property Group’s R84-billion development of the Modderfontein property it purchased from AECI. It will include the building of schools, a university and a contemporary African art gallery. The group plans to build a “new city” over the next 15 years that will focus on the retail and residential sectors. The development will house about 100 000 people, and focus mainly on international residents, the local middle class and pensioners. The housing complex and schools form part of Modderfontein’s nine functional zones, which include services ranging from a central business district to an international conference and exhibition centre. About R3-billion has been committed to develop infrastructure over the next three years, and a Gautrain station is planned for the next four to five years. An estimated 50 000 jobs are expected to be created and 1000 firms were expected to become tenants on completion.

SA, Mozambique sign $6-billion gas pipeline agreement

South African-based independent African oil and gas company Sacoil Holdings is set to construct a 2600 km long gas pipeline worth $6-billion. The pipeline will link the South African gas fields with that of Mozambique, fostering growing regional integration.The project intends to harness the commercial potential of the natural gas reserves discovered in the Rovuma sedimentary basin in the Mozambican province of Cabo Delgado and involves the construction of a 2600km pipeline costing an estimated $6-billion. Sacoil has established a joint development agreement with Mozambican public institutions; its National Institute for Management of State Holdings (IGEPE) and South Africa’s Public Investment Corporation (SOC). Sacoil will perform the technical and commercial feasibility study for the project. The  feasibility study will evaluate power production at thermal power plant, as well as the supply of gas to industries, domestic consumption and vehicles. A report released in January last year pinned Mozambique’s proved natural gas reserves at 100-trillion cubic feet, making it the third-largest proved natural gas reserve holder in Africa after Nigeria and Algeria.

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