Ramaphosa launches R84bn residential city

An often stoic President Cyril Ramaphosa was positively beaming when he delivered the keynote address at the launch of the first phase of the Mooikloof Mega Residential City launch in Tshwane on Sunday.

According to Ramaphosa, the Mooikloof project is the outcome of a very successful public-private process and an example of how each sector’s interests can be aligned and can work for mutual benefit.

He began his address by congratulating developers Balwin Properties who worked in collaboration with Gauteng Provincial Government and the  City of Tshwane who worked together to bring the project to fruition.

Ramaphosa also hailed the District Development Model which calls for a collaboration of the three spheres of government as something that made the project possible.

Moving forward, other stakeholders such as the departments of infrastructure development and human settlements as well as the banking sector will also have a role to play in the project.

The Mooikloof Integrated Development has an estimated project value of over R84 billion and is one of the 62 Strategic Integrated Projects gazetted at the end of July.

The Mooikloof Mega-City development will also lead to the creation of some 41 000 jobs at a time when they are sorely needed.

Ramaphosa also proudly declared that once completed, the Mooikloof Mega-City may end up becoming the world’s largest sectional property development, with land also earmarked for schools, shops and offices.

As a result, the City of Tshwane has facilitated approval of appropriate zoning and the provision of water, waste-water, and energy bulk infrastructure.

“As government, we are walking the talk on enabling conditions for development by issuing licences and zoning rights speedily.”

The Gauteng Provincial Government is also reportedly funding the expansion of the Garsfontein provincial road to accommodate the projected increase in vehicle traffic generated by the development.

The president reminisced about the inaugural State of the Nation Address of the 6th Administration in which he outlined seven priority areas that will guide the work of government as well as his dream for smart cities across South Africa.

Amongst these priority areas were sectors such as spatial integration, human settlements and local government. Areas that would be used to develop post-apartheid cities to fight against the anti-black apartheid spatial planning principles.

“While a minority of our people lived in comfort and security with access to centres of commercial activity and the best of facilities, the black majority were confined to townships, almost to the back years of South Africa that only served as labour reserves. In the rural part of our country, this was even worse.”

This after the president touched on what he calls the 40-40-40 principle.

“Spatial integration is aimed at undoing a prominent feature of the apartheid project. We continue to feel the effects of apartheid spatial design in what may be termed the 40-40-40 principle. Most people are housed 40kms from employment opportunities. As a result, they spend over 40 minutes travelling to and from work and spend over 40% of their incomes on transport expenses. In many cases, those affected are the poor who live in 40m2 houses,” noted Ramaphosa.

To accommodate those affected by this legacy, the location of the Mooikloof Mega City Development ensures that targeted first-time homeowners will have an appreciating asset which they can leverage to continue to increase their asset base by accessing and/or purchasing some of the planned 50,000 units that will be developed in sectional title form.

Potential homeowners will also be able to apply for assistance from government’s Finance Linked Individual Subsidy Programme (FLISP),

This will be facilitated by the Department of Human Settlements through its agency, the Housing Development Agency.

“It is pleasing to note the development is being pursued in line with green building principles, and will also make optimal use of green belts and green spaces for residential recreation,” said Ramaphosa, adding the use of recycled material and solar energy technology would also be implemented in the development of the city. -Citizen