Cape Town's Development Boom

A R580-million Eurocape development is set to go up in Cape Town, South Africa, in the latest in a series of improvements to the city centre. Its first phase will open up 9,900m² of retail and parking space.

The development, within walking distance of South Africa’s Parliament, is the latest in a series of improvements to the city centre. Another is the R1.6-billion Portside building, whose 32 storeys will provide office space for 3,000 people, set to be complete by the end of 2013.

The Department of Public Works is levelling eight buildings near Parliament to create parking spaces for parliamentary staff.

Eurocape sales and marketing manager Simphiwe Mathebula said that the plan for phase one was at an advanced stage and that planning approvals were in place.

“Tenants for more than 40 percent of the retail space have been secured. As soon as the balance has been secured, ground breaking will commence,” Mathebula confirmed.

The new development is in Roeland Street and Hope Street will host Equal Education’s Bookery and a supermarket will be an anchor tenant.

Second phase for ‘young city workers’ 

The second phase will consist mostly of residential accommodation aimed at “young city workers” and the third phase may be made up of flats or office space.

The development was expected to be completed in 2013, Mathebula said.

Public Works spokesperson Thami Mchunu said that the eight buildings around Parliament was set to become an extension to the parliamentary precinct, but until then the area will be used as parking for parliamentary staff.

The demolition of the eight buildings was expected to be completed in November.

Mathebula said that housing for MPs may be included in phase three of Eurocape’s development.

Cape Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Michael Bagraim, said that the Eurocape and Portside developments showed “investors have faith in the economy. Our city is making a comeback”.

City to regenerate six precincts 

In April, Public Works and Transport MEC Robin Carlisle announced plans to renew six city precincts.

These were the Artscape, Somerset, Prestwich Street, Government and Garage precincts as well as the Oude Molen area. This area is to be renamed the Two Rivers Urban Park.

The Artscape Precinct would involve the expansion of the Cape Town International Convention Centre and the area around the theatre, and raising the Artscape Garden to freeway level, allowing for parking underneath.

This project is worth R4.5-billion and would turn the area into a 24-hour entertainment zone, with coffee shops and about 30,000m² of retail space.

Plans for the Somerset Precinct, around Somerset Hospital, have not yet been finalised says  reports.

The plan for the Prestwich Street precinct was to link the city with the V&A Waterfront via a pedestrian route similar to the fan mile between the CBD and Green Point for the Soccer World Cup.

The Government Precinct would centre on provincial government-owned buildings. Examples of these are in Dorp Street and the provincial administration building in Wale Street. These plans include creating one central entrance to government buildings beneath the arches in Keerom Street, and a high rise building where Loop Street meets Leeuwen Street to accommodate government departments.

Property in Buitenkant, Mill, Hope and Roeland Street are part of the Government Precinct.