Cape Town - Durban is well-known for its beaches, but new devlepoments are set to make these prime draw-cards for travellers and locals alike.
On Tuesday eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede broke ground for construction on extending Durban's Beachfront promenade, which will support the R35 billion Point Waterfront development project by unlocking the first phase.
The extension is set to be complete in June 2019, and will be followed by the construction of a hotel, shopping centre, offices and residential homes as part of phase one of Point Waterfront.
The whole project, a public-private partnership, will be completed in three phases over five to ten years and will create 11 000 jobs in the construction phase and 6 750 permanent jobs once it's completed.
According to Gumede, this will help boost the image of Durban as a global city and grow the tourism sector, as well as increase the value of property in the area between 5 and 10%.
“It is encouraging to note the growing interest from the business sector to work with the government in major strategic investments,” says Gumede.
“The Point Waterfront development must be seen in the context of a city-wide development process, indicating that Durban is on the brink of change."
The City will also be raking in R200 million in revenue rates per year after completion, and national public revenues could amount to R1.7 billion that will contribute to the GDP.
City Manager Sipho Nzuza is focused on fixing development bottlenecks in Durban that will grow its tourism profile, which includes investing in the Urban Inner City Renewal Programme. It is aimed at cleaning up the city in terms of safety and cleanliness.
“As the Municipality, we remain committed to the inner city master plan to radically uplift and enhance the CBD of Durban to enhance our global appeal to both tourists and investors.”
Durban recently beat out Cape Town and Johannesburg in the Mercer Quality of Living Survey, and Nzuza says their efforts are helping them inch closer to their goal as being Africa's most liveable city.