New town to rise next to airport


Owen Kock

"All the talk of the N8 Corridor development in Bloemfontein is something of the past; it is now a reality." With these words, Mangaung Metro Executive Mayor, Thabo Manyoni, greeted invited guests at the sod-tuning ceremony of the Airport Development Node Project.
No less than R11 billion will have been spent once the first phase of the project has been completed, and 11 thousand job opportunities will have been created. When fully developed, the value of the investment in this area will be R100 billion.
The town will be 1.5km from the Bram Fischer International Airport, 6km from the Bloemfontein City Centre and between 43 and 52kms from Thaba ‘Nchu and Botshabelo.

The fixed 700 hectares of prime mixed development will include an international conventional centre, an urban square, mall, mixed residential area and a rail station. "When we (ANC) came to office we said we need to have an equitable development in this metro, not equal. In other words, when we are developing the Bloemfontein area, we will equally have to develop the Botshabelo/Thaba ‘Nchu area. "When it comes to this development, the intention for us is to reposition Mangaung economically and financially. When this project is fully functional, almost a R100 billion will have been injected into Mangaung Metro economy," Manyoni said.
A total of 2000 hectares will be developed in total and the 700 hectares to be developed are the first phase. Contractors will be on site as from May, so there is movement and no more talk.

"The town that we are building will be partly powered by solar energy. We will also be building a solar plant nearby to power the town. We are building a typical 22nd century city," Manyoni boasted. He said South Africa is talking about clean energy, energy saving buildings and all things green. He added it has just been talk for most of the time and nothing could be seen, but now, with this project in Mangaung – working together with academic institutions and professionals – the buildings to be built must be energy efficient and energy saving.

Critical facts about the project:

11 000 jobs are to be created in the site servicing phase alone
72 kilometres of tarred roads
5100 tons of sement will be used (170 trucks)
13000 cubic metres of stone will be used (4300 trucks)
160 kilometres of roadside curbing will be constructed
17280 cubic metres of tar will be used (2000 trucks)
32 kilometres of water pipes
24 kilometres of stormwater pipes
1553 kilometres of electrical cables