Massive change in Cape Town as building plans worth R20 billion approved

The City of Cape Town has seen major development, with the city approving building plans to the value of R20.4 billion over the 11-month period ending May 2019.

The city’s mayoral committee member for Spatial Planning and Environment, Marian Niewoudt, said that her department had also approved 8,760 land use applications over the time period.

“Cape Town is a growing city and more people are relocating here in search of opportunities and a better life,” said Niewoudt.

“Some within the development and construction industry often claim that ‘red tape’ and ‘City bureaucracy’ are preventing, delaying, or hampering their industries, and subsequent investment in our local economy.

“On the other hand, some residents are opposed to new developments. They want their neighbourhoods to retain the character it had 20 years ago, despite the fact that more people are relocating to Cape Town and that the growing population must be catered for,” she said.

Niewoudt said that the tension between the different interests is further exacerbated by the legacy of apartheid spatial planning, and the dire need for affordable housing in well-located areas.

The mayoral committee member added that the following statistics confirm that the City’s Development Management Department is performing its duties in a responsible manner, and within a reasonable time:

  • “We have received 21,943 building plan applications from 1 July 2018 to 31 May 2019, and approved 19,585 applications over the same time period. This reflects an average of 1,780 building plans approved per month across eight planning districts.
  • “We have received 9,981 land use applications from 1 July 2018 to 31 May 2019, and finalised 8,760 applications over the same time period. Thus, the City has finalised 88% of the submissions received when one compares the number of applications submitted with the number of applications finalised.

Cape Town has become a major construction hub in recent years, with a number of notable projects currently in the pipeline.

New tallest building

Despite delays due to city approvals and funding hurdles, construction on the Zero-2-One Tower – which will become the tallest building in Cape Town – is expected to launch soon.

The R1.3 billion city centre project is located on the corner of Adderley and Strand Streets, and is being led by developers FWJK.

Zero 2 One Tower, at 44 storeys, will become the tallest building in Cape Town and will comprise 570 apartments and 7,000 sqm of retail shops on ground level and station concourse level.

Airport upgrades 

Cape Town International Airport (CTIA) has several key infrastructure projects planned over the next five years, with more than R7 billion in investment expected to take place over this period.

These upgrades will include:

  • The refurbishment of the domestic arrivals terminal;
  • The expansion of the international terminal;
  • A new realigned runway worth R3.93 billion which will achieve the runway realignment that will in the future allow for the expansion of the terminals;
  • The new runway will allow the airport to increase its per hour landing and departures from 30 to 45 aircraft movements;
  • It will allow the airport to handle the new generation large aircraft such as the Boeing 747-800 or the A380 aircrafts.

A new skyscraper – modelled after a Rubik’s cube

Property developer Abland, in partnership with Giflo and Nedbank, will construct a new mixed use skyscraper in the Mother City – The Rubik – which will include premium office space and luxury apartments.

The building has been designed by architect firm dhk, and features a stacked glassed tower block which, as the name suggests, angulates at various points to represent cubes.

According to Abland, the development will cost around R480 million to complete, with construction anticipated to commence around the middle of the year, and completion targeted for 2021.

Ratanga redevelopment

Developers Rabie recently published a new master plan for the Ratanga development in Cape Town, following the theme park’s closure in May 2018.

The land will be redeveloped into a vibrant new mixed-use precinct of around 120,000 square metres.

The new precinct plan for the site, which includes residential apartments, a retirement component, a hotel, restaurant and offices all set around beautiful water bodies and a large public park, has been approved by the City of Cape Town.

New plots for cannabis 

Cape Town recently announced that it will release vacant land for the production of medical cannabis, with the city hoping to get its foot in the door of what’s considered an ‘untapped sector’ in South Africa.

The set-up of the facility will bring with it an investment of R638 million in capital expenditure during the construction of phase one, the city said.

Additionally, a further R1.5 billion will be invested during phase two which is expected to commence in 2023.

The city estimates that by the end of phase two, employment opportunities for 250 individuals would have been created.

Read: Foreign investment secured to build the new tallest building in Cape Town

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Massive change in Cape Town as building plans worth R20 billion approved