City of Cape Town announces qualifying bidder for freeway precinct project

2018-02-12 20:00

Cape Town – Mitchell Du Plessis Projects (Pty) Ltd, trading as Mitchell Du Plessis Associates (MDA), has been announced as the qualifying bidder for the development of the Foreshore Freeway Precinct in Cape Town, the city announced on Monday.

The city notified the bidders on the outcome of the evaluation process on Monday, it said in a statement.  

The appointed bid evaluation committee (BEC) had concluded the first stage of the bid evaluation process for the development of the freeway precinct, the city said. 

"Seven proposals were received from the private sector by the submission date of 9 February 2017.

"After an initial screening for responsiveness, six proposals were exhibited in the civic centre in March last year."

It said the six proposals were evaluated by a multidisciplinary BEC which considered them against a list of prescribed evaluation criteria.

Combination of market-related and residential units

"MDA's proposal entails, among others, the completion of the unfinished sections of the freeways – these are the connections to and from Helen Suzman Boulevard; and the connections to and from the N1 and N2 freeways."

It added that the development process was a combination of approximately 3 200 market-related residential units and a minimum of 450 affordable residential units.

"MDA proposes to complete the unfinished highways, and to finance or cross-subsidise the new roads and affordable residential units through the development of upmarket and mid-market residential units.

"It is proposed that the market-related residential units be located in 11 new tower blocks with heights ranging between 63m, 123m and 143m with views of the mountain, sea and harbour."

The proposal also suggests that the different heights and location of the towers will ensure that the iconic views of Table Mountain and the sea from the harbour and public spaces are retained.

The city said negotiations to conclude an agreement between MDA and itself would commence soon after the expiry of the period provided for bidders to lodge any disputes, objections, complaints and queries.

Meanwhile, the city's transport and urban development councillor, Brett Herron, welcomed the news as a "historical moment" and the first building block of an inclusive inner city. 

"Reversing the legacy of apartheid spatial planning is a key-priority of this government. This means that everything we do in the housing realm should be aimed at providing affordable housing opportunities that are located on land with easy access to public transport and jobs," he said.  

Shocking allegations

"This is a bold and innovative step by the city to find a sustainable and long-term solution to a number of challenges we are currently facing."

Last year, Craig Kesson, the executive director in the mayor's office, made several shocking allegations against Mayor Patricia de Lille in an affidavit.

Kesson alleged that there was a meeting on September 5, 2017, where allegations relating to the bid evaluation process for the freeway foreshore project tender were discussed.

He said independent consultants Moore Stephens, who advised the city on tender issues, criticised the conduct of Melissa Whitehead, the commissioner of the transport and urban development authority.

According to Kesson's affidavit, Moore Stephens also said Whitehead had stated during a meeting that a particular bid should be rejected because Herron, as well as "the mayor and the deputy mayor said they will never accept the… proposal".

Kesson said that on September 6 he had told De Lille he was worried about the concerns expressed about Whitehead's role in losses relating to the MyCiti bus service.

Whitehead has since been put on suspension.

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