Mega infrastructure projects in Nelson Mandela Bay set to cost ratepayers R1.5bn

Posted On Wednesday, 15 April 2015 13:31 Published by
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Construction at one of Nelson Mandela Bay's biggest infrastructure projects is under way and set to cost ratepayers about R1.5bn.


The project, which will dramatically increase waste-water treatment capacity, is set to be completed in about five years. This was revealed during site inspections by the municipality’s infrastructure and engineering committee.

The councillors visited several projects to ascertain if they were running on schedule. These were Koyana Street in Zwide, Singapi Street in New Brighton, John Tallant Road in Deal Party and Fish Water Flats. Housing and business development in the Bay has added pressure onto the sanitation infrastructure, forcing the city to upgrade its treatment plant. The municipality’s director of water and sanitation, Barry Martin, said the upgrade at Fish Water Flats was in its first phase.

“We have about four or five contracts running here at the same time. This project is very important. It’s one of our main catalytic projects in the metro, like Nooitgedacht. “About 60% of the sewage in the metro comes here,” Martin said. The upgrade will increase the treatment capacity from 135 megalitres a day to 165Ml/day.

Director of planning and research Laure Pieterse said: “We work with housing, so when houses are connected, we must be ready to accept the effluent. “The work is going to cost about R1.5-billion and we anticipate it being completed in 2020 or 2022.” Pieterse said the Bay was trying to source money from the Development Bank of South Africa to fast-track the project and finish sooner. At Koyana Street, councillors were told that the roadworks project was expected to be completed by the end of the month.

After months of the road being closed off to motorists and complaints from businesses that construction was badly affecting their businesses, contractors are in the process of putting on the final touches. They will soon start painting lanes and installing traffic signals. Municipal public accounts committee chairman councillor Jimmy Tutu said there was previously an outcry from residents about the roadworks, but he was happy to see that the situation had since improved.

Infrastructure and engineering committee chairman councillor Andile Mfunda said he wanted to see the area cleaned and the kerbs levelled. At Singapi Street, councillors hailed the project by the Mandela Bay Development Agency, which will see the area beautified with paving, trees, stalls, parks and benches all along the road. MBDA chief executive Pierre Voges said the R40-million project would be finished in two years.

In John Tallant Road, the municipality said it had applied to the Department of Environmental Affairs to be able to expand one of the lanes because of a major traffic bottleneck near the traffic lights. The metro needs approval before it can go ahead as the area is water- and plant-sensitive.

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