Improvement Precint benefits Umhlanga

Posted On Tuesday, 03 April 2012 02:00 Published by
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Much of the credit for creating a world-class environment goes to the uMhlanga Urban Improvement Precinct (UIP) established by local property owners in conjunction with eThekwini Council

Increasingly, uMhlanga Rocks on the KwaZulu-Natal north coast near Durban has become the destination of choice for many property owners and businesses owners including the relocation of many corporate and banks to uMhlanga Ridge.

“With approximately 50 000 permanent residents, two 5-Star hotels a short walk from the town centre, and only minutes away from the largest shopping centre in Africa (Gateway Shopping Centre), uMhlanga has retained its village atmosphere, despite the fact that during the holiday season it buzzes with activity says Elwyn Schenk, area principal for Pam Golding Properties. Add to this good security and cleanliness and you have all the elements for a sought after and sustainable property market.

Says Schenk: “Anyone meandering along the uMhlanga Promenade or through the village will not fail to be impressed not only by the physical beauty of the area, but also the feeling of cleanliness, ‘greening’, safety and security. Much of the credit for creating a world-class environment must go to the uMhlanga Urban Improvement Precinct (UIP), which was established by local property owners in conjunction with eThekwini Council. The UIP’s objectives are: securing and enhancing property values, creating an environment which supports vibrant business activity, and improving the general environment and quality of life for residents and visitors alike.”

He says this has been achieved by creating attractive and well managed public areas through the establishment of private sector/municipal partnerships which optimise municipal investment in infrastructure and services to public areas. At the same time the UIP delivers privately funded, supplementary services such as security, cleaning, greening and maintenance. A good example of this is the focus on clean streets and beaches, and the complete absence of any contact crime over the recent Christmas holidays.

“Well received by residents, the UIP has had a significant, positive impact on uMhlanga and the lifestyle of its residents – a factor which is bound to translate into enhanced property values,” says Schenk, who is also a board member of the uMhlanga Village UIP.

The existing uMhlanga UIP areas and associated managed areas cover 10km of public roads and Promenade, including over 3 000 individually rated properties, and with a total operational budget exceeding R6 million per annum.

Adds Schenk: “Some of the success stories around uMhlanga UIP include:

• significantly reducing crime, and additional security around key events such as the annual festive season and World Cup
• input into the municipal upgrade (currently in planning) of the uMhlanga Promenade and CBD node
• introduction of a central emergency and security response number, supported by an interactive web-based system for reporting faults and for service delivery requests regarding public areas
• greening and maintenance of the Promenade and village
• motivation for the introduction of traffic circles and road calming measures
• beach reclamation and dune replanting.

“This year (2012) will also see the upgrading of informal trading facilities. All these activities and more make this a peaceful and pleasant destination for locals and visitors alike. Wherever possible local communities are involved in new initiatives such as the uMhlanga Nature Reserve, Beach and Hawaan Forest guided walks, which provide training and employment opportunities,” he says.

Publisher: eProp
Source: PGP

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