Government launches R18 billion district in South Africa | Infrastructure news

Public Works and Infrastructure Minister, Patricia de Lille launched the R18 billion Salvokop government district in South Africa in Tshwane, the first development of its kind in South Africa.

The Salvokop mixed-use precinct development includes the construction of five national government client departments as part of a major district development which will also include business developments, schools, healthcare facilities and residences.

The development will see the remaining four government head offices constructed in the precinct: the Department of Social Development and its agencies, the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) and the National Development Agency, the Department of Higher Education and Training, the Department of Home Affairs and the Department of Correctional Services and Constitutional Development.

The precinct will be developed in three phases:

  • Phase 1 (A and B): Installation of the bulk and internal infrastructure services and development of the 4 Public Private Partnership (PPP) Head Office Buildings
  • Phase 2: Development of the Business Erven by the private sector
  • Phase 3: Development of the mixed-income residential component

The development will be a first of its kind for South Africa aimed at achieving spatial integration by bringing government departments to a central location in proximity to economic development and mixed typology residential developments for households and various income streams.

The construction of Phase 1A: Bulk Civil and Internal Engineering works is currently in progress with a number of local residents and SMMEs from the nearby community already employed on the project.

Key benefits of the project to the community and region at large include:

  • Economic transformation and job creation: An estimated 3,215 jobs during construction of phase 1:
  • Spatial integration, human settlements, and local government: Mixed-use precinct with land use rights in place for Government, Business 1, Institutional and Private open space creating equal access to schooling, housing, work opportunities, transport and recreational facilities
  • Social cohesion and safe communities: Contributes to the NDP 2030 and sustainable development goals by responding to the Green Economy with sustainable buildings and precinct design, maximising on solar power, rainwater harvesting, grey water recycling etc. and planting over 700 indigenous trees and establishing public parks.
The Salvokop Precinct Development was also gazetted as a Strategic Integrated Project (SIP) as part of the Infrastructure Investment Plan approved by Cabinet in May 2020.

This project is one of the projects demonstrating government’s commitment to investing in infrastructure development which enables economic growth and job creation and bringing the construction sector back to life.

Project progress

The civil and engineering works currently taking place on-site include:

  • Preparations for new roads to be constructed
  • the construction of electrical substations, storm water trenches and other bulk infrastructure works including the construction of a 30 mega liter reservoir at Freedom Park
The bulk and electrical infrastructure works amounts to R377.3million with R41million spent to date. The bulk infrastructure works started in October 2021 and is expected to be completed by October 2023.

Economic Empowerment

The projected SMME sub-contracting is R98, 6 million with R744 000 spent to date on SMME sub-contracting and another R1.1millionon local labour.

Some of the work sub-contracted to SMMEs to date includes; site camp fencing to a 100% black female-owned company, on-site security, plant hire, equipment, and construction materials.

Job creation

The project is expected to create an estimated 3,215 jobs during construction of phase 1 and more than 80 0000 jobs over the life cycle of the project from 2021 – 2030 for the phases which include formal jobs in professional sectors, the built environment, and labour, also informal sector as well as material manufacturing, transport and supporting services.

The project will be the first of its kind and aims to address the spatial disparities by reversing the legacy of apartheid spatial planning by bringing government departments in proximity to business development and mixed-type residential developments to cater for diverse household income levels.

“The project will be an example of how developments need to be constructed in our democracy by ensuring people live in well-located spaces, close to transport and economic activities.,” said the minister.

“The DPWI has been working closely with the community to ensure the success of the project together with other stakeholders including GTAC in National Treasury and the City of Tshwane.”

A project steering committee has also been formed which includes representatives from DPWI, the City of Tshwane, the local councilors and community leaders and members.

“My appeal to the community is to work with the government to ensure the success of this project which has great benefits for the community through sustained job creation, sub-contracting for local businesses and ultimately a new integrated development that will bring economic developments, safety for families and community and more jobs for years to come. Threats by the so-called “construction mafia” will also be dealt with in a serious manner by the South African Police Service as we cannot allow community projects to be delayed and held hostage through intimidation tactics. We must work together within the respective structures and co-operate with one another keeping the best interests of the community at heart.”

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