The Department of Public Works is partnering with the Coega Development Corporation on the first phase of a project to upgrade 13 Western Cape harbours.

The project, which will cost approximately R400 million, is expected to boost the small-scale fishing industry and tourism in the Western Cape.

Riyaadh Kara, Quantity Surveyor for the Department of Public Works and Project Manager, says the project forms part of the department’s focus on the oceans economy and is a strategic fit to Operation Phakisa.

“The project is tipped to change the lives of many fishing communities and tourism operators relying on 13 of the smaller proclaimed harbours in the Western Cape,” he notes.

Works underway

As the implementing agent on behalf of the department the Coega Development Corporation (CDC), has been at the coalface in rolling out and implementing the Small Harbours Programme. To date The CDC has procured and appointed the necessary marine, civil and electrical engineers, as well as marine surveyors.

Marine surveys and reports for all thirteen Harbours have been completed, as well as the testing of the sediment materials that need dredging in order to open up some of the harbours. Environmental impact assessments have been completed and all dredging dumping permits have been obtained from the Department of Environmental Affairs in January 2018.

The tenders for repairs and upgrades to slipways and the replacement of shore cranes have been advertised and are in the process of selecting successful candidates.

Speeding up the process

“We are speeding up the process as quickly as possible as we understand that the livelihoods of at least 13 coastal communities are dependent on the harbour which is used by the fishing fleet and tourism operators,” says Themba Koza, CDC Programme Director.

“Work has started last year in harbours with the removal of all sunken vessels and on completion maintenance dredging will commence by June 2018,”he adds.

The thirteen harbours et to benefit from the upgrade include Hout Bay, Kalk Bay, Saldanha Bay, Pepper Bay, Gordon’s Bay, Hermanus, Struisbaai, Gansbaai, Stilbaai, Arniston, Laaiplek, Lamberts and St. Helena Bay.

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