Philippi now launches the ‘Hub’

2015-09-17 06:00

A performance group from Philippi High School kept the guests enthralled at the launch.

A performance group from Philippi High School kept the guests enthralled at the launch.

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An old cement factory in Philippi which has undergone a multimillion-rand metamorphosis, has now also been launched as ‘The Hub’.

It is part of the burgeoning Philippi Village precinct that will, over the next few years, also include a four-storey hotel, a nightclub, a private hospital and an education zone - as well as the biggest “container” shopping mall in the country.

The factory was initially purchased by The Business Place Philippi in early 2000, part of a greater long-term vision to transform the surrounding and marginalised area into a thriving ‘central suburbs’, and was subsequently refurbished as a thesis project in sustainable design by Cape Town architect, Philip Briel.

Operating since 2005, the building has, until recently, provided the residents of the community with much-needed business support services.

Now, officially launched as The Hub, it goes one giant leap further towards supporting the overall vision for the precinct; to providing secure, accessible and affordable infrastructure that allows members of the community the ability to meet, collaborate and, importantly, locate their businesses locally.

Located in the heart of the Cape Flats, Philippi is a large township and industrial area with a population of approximately 500 000.

As with many other townships, the area is under-developed and under-serviced, with a high unemployment rate.

General Manager of the Philippi Village, Amor Strauss said the “entrepreneurship is often a means of survival in townships where jobs are scarce.

“Driven by the desperate need to earn money, many entrepreneurs start their businesses without adequate funding, infrastructure or knowledge.

Limited access to these vital resources severely compromises their chances for success.”

The vision behind The Hub, and the greater mixed-use Philippi Village, is to create vibrant, creative ‘new urban space’ in which to work, learn, create and play.’

A space where two worlds – that of the Philippi township and the rest of Cape Town – can meet and interact.

Explains Strauss, “We wanted it to be an interesting space, built primarily for the locals, but also that others can visit, utilise and enjoy.

On top of this, she says,” we’re looking to stimulate local economy and see a reduction of daily migratory patterns, with more cash recycled within the community.”

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