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Key projects

Gautrain Rapid Rail Link

The Gautrain Rapid Rail Link is a state-of-the-art rapid rail network for Gauteng. The rail connection comprises two links, one between Tshwane (Pretoria) and Johannesburg and the other between OR Tambo International Airport and Sandton. Phase one of the project, linking Sandton and the airport, was completed just prior to the 2010 FIFA World Cup, while the second and final phase, the Johannesburg-Tshwane link, was completed in mid-2011. Apart from the four anchor stations on these two links, six other stations are linked by some 80 kilometres of rail along the completed route.

Although Gautrain began as one of the 11 Blue IQ projects, the project is now part of the Gauteng Department of Roads and Public Transport. A Gautrain management agency has been established.

The Gautrain is primarily aimed at improving economic growth, creating jobs and alleviating traffic congestion in Gauteng. It is part of a longer-term vision, which will include a commitment towards creating and sustaining a new culture of public transport use.

Strategic objectives

The Gautrain project illustrates the GPG's commitment to promoting public transport and supports the government's priorities, which include:

  • accelerated economic growth, development and infrastructure delivery, with emphasis on job creation
  • quality service delivery
  • good governance
  • SMME development
  • investment in Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment
  • convergence of public-private partnerships
  • promotion of tourism

In implementing the Gautrain Rapid Rail Link the GPG also considered the improvement of transport and land use coordination and the integration of the different modes of transport. The Gautrain will also improve the image of public transport.

Dinokeng

Just northeast of urban Johannesburg, Ekurhuleni and Tshwane lies the vibrant and warm big-sky region of Dinokeng, a tourism destination where the world's largest diamond was discovered. Today the area is sparkling with natural, cultural and historical attractions, a place where South Africans and their visitors can enjoy the outdoors and the history and culture of Africa - all in one day.

The name Dinokeng is derived from the languages of the baTswana and baPedi people who traditionally inhabited the area, and means "a place of rivers". Dinokeng lies in the catchment area of two rivers that flow into the Olifants and Limpopo rivers and on to the Indian Ocean.

Dinokeng is easy to reach from the cities of Johannesburg, Ekurhuleni and Tshwane and is characterised by an excellent road network and good telecommunications. The area offers a wide range of visitor facilities, activities and experiences, from adventures like hiking, mountain biking, sangoma (witchdoctor) consultations, hunting and boating to the relaxing experiences of tea gardens, restaurants, pubs and village shopping.

Strategic objectives

Blue IQ's involvement in Dinokeng is focused on the development of strategic economic infrastructure in order to leverage private sector investment in tourism business activity in the 240 000-hectare project area.

Dinokeng's key focus areas are:

  • Investment in tourism infrastructure - roads upgrading and tourism signage
  • Public-private partnerships to encourage private sector investment in major tourism facilities in Roodeplaat and Cullinan
  • Development of the Dinokeng Game Reserve in the northern area of Dinokeng based on agreements with private land owners in collaboration with the Limpopo and Mpumalanga provincial governments
  • Destination and investment marketing campaigns to encourage tourism and investment in tourism
  • Facilitation of tourism skills development and tourism enterprise development
  • Support of land reform initiatives by the Department of Land Affairs and the Commission on Restitution of Land Rights to ensure the transformation of land ownership patterns.

For more information go to www.dinokeng.co.za

The Cradle of Humankind

The Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site comprises a unique band of palaeo-anthropological sites, uncovered as a result of mining for dolomite, which have yielded valuable insight in regard to the origin of modern humans. The site was declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco in 1999. The Sterkfontein Caves, one of 13 excavated sites, is home to the longest continuous palaeontological dig in the world, dating back to 1936.

Sterkfontein is home to the 2.3-milion-year-old old "Mrs Ples", discovered in 1947, and "Little Foot", an almost complete Australopithecus africanus hominid dated at 4.17-million years. In 2003 the GPG entered into a public-private partnership contract valued at R163-million for the construction, design and operation of a world-class visitors' centre, exhibition and recreational facility showcasing the site.

This public-private partnership is the first of its kind, a concession agreement requiring the concessionaire to pay an annual concession fee, which government will invest in community benefit projects and in scientific research. The development, made up of visitor facilities at Sterkfontein and Maropeng, opened in 2005.

Scenic routes connect the site through diverse private sector tourism attractions offering outdoor activities such as hiking, ballooning, fishing, and horse trails, a variety of restaurants and coffee shops, and arts and crafts outlets to suit all budgets.

Strategic objectives

Blue IQ's involvement in the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage was on the preservation and conservation of world heritage as well as the development of strategic economic infrastructure in order to leverage off private sector investment in tourism business activity in the 47000-hectare project area.

The Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site's key focus areas are:

  • Investment in tourism infrastructure - bulk infrastructure, roads, tourism road signage
  • Development of a network of tourism visitor centres through public-private partnerships
  • Destination and investment marketing campaigns to encourage tourism and investment in tourism
  • Facilitation of tourism skills development and tourism enterprise development

For more information go www.cradleofhumankind.co.za

City Deep Logistics Hub

The City Deep terminal is the Premier container depot in South Africa, an inland port that is the largest in Africa and fifth-largest in the world. City Deep is currently under-utilised, with distortions in freight movement and transport costs as a percentage of production costs having negative effects on the provincial economy.

Blue IQ's funding of the City Deep Roads Infrastructure project was to increase the efficiency and decrease the cost of containerised cargo moving into and out of Gauteng. Being a landlocked province 600 kilometres from the nearest sea port, the economic importance of an effective transport and logistics platform for containers is crucial to the composition and location of companies in the province.

Blue IQ's involvement in the project was more specifically to create infrastructure to support the operations of major export of goods into sub-Saharan Africa.

JIA Freezone

The purpose of the JIA industrial development zone (IDZ) project is to provide an efficient import and export duty-free zone for high value-added, light manufactured goods being transported by air freight. It will provide a marketing platform for South African goods and the location for light export-oriented manufacture industries, together with the avionics and aerospace cluster

The external road infrastructure aimed at providing access to the IDZ has been completed. The government has, after a lengthy process, granted the provisional operator permit to Blue IQ. The IDZ itself is currently in design phase. In addition, representatives of the first two identified sectors for the IDZ (jewellery manufacturing and agroprocessing) have been developing business plans.

The creation of an industrial development zone adjacent to the JIA will contribute to the competitiveness and growth of the manufacturing sector in Gauteng by lowering the input costs and improving the supply chain efficiencies for firms in the IDZ.

Kliptown

The Greater Kliptown Regeneration Development is a major urban regeneration initiative in a commercially important and historically significant area of Soweto, with the anchor project being the development of the Walter Sisulu Square of Dedication (WSSD).

The square has created a major local, national and international heritage and tourism attraction, contributing to Johannesburg's overall tourism strategy with the potential to change Soweto into a city. It celebrates and commemorates the birth of a democratic South Africa by embodying the ideals and principles of the Freedom Charter. In order to achieve this vision, a design philosophy consisting of nine key principles, representative of the nine provinces in South Africa, was established. These are ecology, accessibility, vitality, legibility, robustness, identity, history, symbolism and equity - and reflect all public sector efforts at integrated city-making.

Strategic objectives

The development of Walter Sisulu Square of Dedication, funded by Blue IQ, has turned Kliptown into a heritage site and a Premier tourist destination in the city, improved the local community's quality of life, and transformed the area into a thriving residential and commercial node.

The urban design idea was to integrate Kliptown's town centre as a distinct node into its surrounding areas - and to thus grow city functionality.

Specific objectives include:

  • Maximising the recreational public open space system along the Klipspruit River
  • Maximising economic growth and empowerment
  • Maximising the heritage, tourism and educational significance and importance of Walter Sisulu Square of Dedication
  • Creating an integrated, safe, secure and efficient transport system
  • Creating sustainable neighbourhoods providing homes in safe, secure, and healthy environments for a mix of income groups
  • Creating sustainable neighbourhoods providing homes in safe, secure, and healthy environments for a mix of income groups

For more information email info@jda.org.za or call 011 688 7851

Wadeville Alrode Corridor

The Wadeville Alrode Industrial Corridor project is aimed at creating an integrated platform for the expansion of the tradable goods sector and supporting exports, especially into sub-Saharan Africa.

Blue IQ's involvement and funding in the project was to regenerate a geographically significant manufacturing corridor which had fallen into disuse. Lying between OR Tambo International Airport and the City Deep terminal, this East Rand corridor had been home to local manufacturing firms that failed to survive in the post-sanctions, World Trade Organisation tariff-reduction era. Fundamentally good infrastructure lay wasting.

Upgrades to the area's infrastructure and support services will allow them to be used to their potential, taking full advantage of the corridor's location.

Gauteng Freeway Improvement Plan

The Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project (GFIP) comprises different phases to upgrade and implement new freeways in an ultimate 560-kilometre freeway network. Apart from widening freeways, the GFIP project aims to open up bottlenecks at interchanges, with 34 interchanges significantly upgraded in the first phase, including such infamous traffic traps as the Allandale, Rivonia, William Nicol, Gilloolys and Elands interchanges. Median lighting and intelligent transport systems (ITS) will also be provided on the network.

ITS, comprising of variable message signs (VMS), CCTV cameras and incident management services, allow the South African National Roads Agency (SANRAL) manage the national road network in Gauteng for best use of the road capacity available. Through the VMS, SANRAL is able to warn road users of congestion. The CCTV cameras ensure that incidents are noted and emergency services dispatched immediately. This information is also available on SANRAL's traffic website www.i-traffic.co.za.

In planning the GFIP, SANRAL strived to create links with other transport systems such as the Gautrain, Metrorail and Bus Rapid Transport to provide commuters with the choice of using public transport or car-pooling, thereby alleviating the congestion caused by single-passenger vehicles.

The project was approved by cabinet in 2007, after which SANRAL widely advertised the details of the project, the intent to toll, the proposed toll points and expected toll tariffs, and the public were given the opportunity to comment. The comments were considered by the Minister of Transport, after which the relevant road sections were declared as toll roads.

Following the declaration of these freeway sections as toll roads, SANRAL was able to continue to raise funding from capital markets and procure contractors to begin construction.

The Innovation Hub

The Innovation Hub is the leading knowledge-intensive business cluster in South Africa, Africa's first internationally accredited science park and a full member of the International Association of Science Parks.

Strategically located in Pretoria, Gauteng - South Africa's executive capital and "smart" province - the Innovation Hub's intelligent community is a regional centre of innovation and knowledge creation, linked to the fast-moving world of global interconnectivity.

The Innovation Hub has created a unique space for high-tech entrepreneurs, world-class businesses, academics, researchers and venture capitalists to meet, network and prosper. Its value-adding business support services contribute to the growth and globalisation of technology-rich enterprises in an environment that promotes innovation and enhances competitiveness for knowledge-based businesses

A science park is an organisation managed by specialised professionals, whose main aim is to increase the wealth of its community by promoting the culture of innovation and the competitiveness of its associated businesses and knowledge-based institutions.

It stimulates and manages the flow of knowledge and technology among universities, R&D institutions, companies and markets. It also facilitates the creation and growth of innovation-based companies through incubation and spin-off processes, and provides other value-added services together with high-quality space and facilities.

The Innovation Hub is a place where high-tech entrepreneurs, small businesses, world-class corporations, academic and research organisations and venture capitalists can meet, network and prosper.

The environment provides value-adding business services to support the growth of technology-rich business enterprises over the long-term to increase the wealth of the local knowledge intensive community, promote a culture of innovation, and stimulate the competitiveness of companies and knowledge-based institutions.

Walkways, piazzas, boulevards and public open spaces are integral to the precinct where modern architecture and indigenous fauna and flora provide residents with access to an excellent business lifestyle.

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