South Africa to get new ‘post-apartheid’ smart cities and upgraded highways: Ramaphosa

 ·11 Feb 2021

President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced that government is currently ‘conceptualising’ a number of post-apartheid smart cities in provinces around the country.

Speaking in 2021 state of the nation address, Ramaphosa said that these infrastructure projects form a key part of the government’s Covid-19 recovery plan.

The president said that planning for one of these cities has already begun in the Lanseria region in Gauteng.

“The Lanseria Smart City, the first new city to be built in a democratic South Africa, is now a reality in the making,” he said.

“The draft masterplan for this smart city – which will become home to between 350,000 to 500,000 people within the next decade – was completed in November 2020 and is now out for public comment.”

Ramaphosa added that government’s R100 billion infrastructure fund is now in operation and that the country has billions of rands in planned infrastructure development, including upgraded highways.

“We have now developed an infrastructure investment project pipeline worth R340 billion in network industries such as energy, water, transport and telecommunications,” he said.

“This includes the rehabilitation of the N1, N2 and N3 highways, the student housing infrastructure programme, and the Mokolo and Crocodile River water project.”

Smart city

Ramaphosa previously announced the Lanseria smart city project in is 2020 state of the nation address.

The process is being led by the Investment and Infrastructure Office in the Presidency alongside the provincial governments of Gauteng and North West, working together with the cities of Johannesburg, Tshwane and Madibeng.

Working with development finance institutions, Ramaphosa said that government has put together an innovative process that will fund the bulk sewerage, electricity, water, digital infrastructure and roads that will be the foundation of the new city.

It will not only be smart and 5G ready, but will be a leading benchmark for green infrastructure, he said.

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