All roads lead to Baywest

2015-05-20 06:00

Continued from page 1

“Research shows that security breaches at malls occur mostly at the hands of suspects who hide their faces with caps or hoodies. We will be asking our patrons to remove their hoodies, and if they are wearing caps, to either take them off or wear them back-to-front, so their faces are easily visible to our security cameras.”

Another safety element employed is that of controlled parking, and deploying specially trained security personnel rather than car guards. There was an incremental parking rate for this, said De Necker, to ensure those accessing the parking were there to visit the mall.

“By implementing an incremental parking rate, we eliminate the need for car guards as our security personnel will be patrolling the car park,” said De Necker.

Parking for the first hour is free.

The size of the mall – the largest in the Eastern Cape at 90 000m² – meant shops would be open for longer, to suit shoppers’ needs, De Necker said. The Fun Factory entertainment node and restaurants would open from 9am to 10pm, seven days a week, while the general retailers would open from 9am to 7pm Sunday to Thursday, and 9am to 9pm on Fridays, Saturdays and public holidays, she said.

De Necker, said the mall would be trading at between 70% and 80% occupancy when it opened tomorrow, with more exciting tenants opening their doors in the following months. By December, the mall would be fully let, she said.

The mall’s major anchor tenants who will be opening for business tomorrow include the largest Woolworths in the province, the first Checkers Hyper in the province, Edgars and Game. All four anchor stores will span between 5 500m² and 8 500m².

The games arcade Nitro Park, which will also boast a bowling alley and a bumper cars circuit, will also open tomorrow.

Outlets which will open in the months following the grand opening include Ster-Kinekor (mid-June); Toys R Us (July); Factorie and Cotton On (September); and Platinum Group stores which include Jenny Button, Hilton Weiner; Vertigo and Urban (date to be announced).

The biggest private development in the province, the mall is the catalyst to an even bigger development – that of Baywest City, which with its lifestyle, commercial and residential developments spanning the next 10 to 15 years will mimic the iconic Century City development in Cape Town, which developed around the Canal Walk shopping centre.

The development has been a massive economic boost for the region, having created about 4 500 jobs during the construction phase of the mall (a more than 40% increase on the 3 000 direct jobs the developers had originally forecast for the project), according to independent auditors BTKM. The operational phase of the mall is creating a further 2 500 much-needed permanent jobs.

According to BTKM’s May audit, 76.8% of workers on site hail from the Eastern Cape (50% of whom come from the NMB metro), while about 95% of workers classify as “previously disadvantaged individuals” (PDIs)

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