A model of the Kopanong Gauteng Government Precinct on display at the Gauteng Infrastructure Investment Conference.
Launching the Kopanong Gauteng Government Precinct project on Tuesday, 28 July, Gauteng Infrastructure Development MEC Nandi Mayathula-Khoza said the project would accelerate the rejuvenation of Joburg's inner city, while attracting private sector investment in line with the government's drive to transform, modernise and reindustrialise the Gauteng City Region.
"This R5-billion project is a game changer that will revamp the existing state of the inner city, which will enable new business interests and accelerate retail shops, restaurants, café's, book stores and other entertainment centres," Mayathula-Khoza said.
The precinct, one of the province's flagship infrastructure projects, was among those that was showcased to investors at the inaugural Gauteng Infrastructure Investment Conference earlier this month.
According to the Gauteng government website, construction will involve the rehabilitation and redevelopment of up to 21 buildings in the CBD, and is expected to take three to five years to complete.
The precinct will feature skywalks between buildings, and a new square, while the rehabilitation of the buildings will incorporate green technologies such as solar panels and rooftop gardens to reduce the precinct's maintenance costs and carbon footprint.
The provincial government will not be alone in investing in new or upgraded headquarters in Joburg's inner city. In his State of the City address in May, Executive Mayor Parks Tau announced that construction work had started on a new City Council Chamber that will include modern facilities for members of the public who wish to attend Council meetings.
"Together with this initiative, the Metro Centre and its precinct will be revitalised to create an inviting and accessible space for employees, residents and visitors who want to access City services," the Mayor said.
"It will be turned into a 24-hour mixed-use campus that provides office space for all the City's departments and entities but also includes residential apartments, retail shops and a 'People's Square'."
Gauteng Premier David Makhura, addressing the Gauteng Infrastructure Investment Conference on 16 July, emphasised the importance of infrastructure for accelerating economic growth in the province.
Premier Makhura urged business to come to the party, saying Gauteng would require R1.67-trillion in infrastructure investment over the next 15 years, and that the government could not raise it alone.
Over the next three years, the Premier said, Gauteng, together with its metros, would spend more than R94-billion on social and economic infrastructure projects. However, this was still not enough to meet the province's infrastructure needs.
"Building meaningful partnerships with the private sector is not a luxury," he said. "The private sector remains the mainstay of fixed investment in the Gauteng economy, accounting for 80% of gross fixed capital formation at the moment."