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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
We've previously discussed the development of the new central library at the Centrum Site. However, with more concrete news emerging of a comprehensive development of this prime site, and the bump of its status to "Category A (in or near implementation)" I thought it deserved its own thread.

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Centrum Government Precinct mixed-use development

This is a proposed 54 hectare mixed use development to create a government precinct inclusive of private sector investment.

May 13, 2017





Catalytic Project: Category A (in or near implementation)
Area: Inner City
Project description
The Centrum site proposed development includes:

Integrated Rapid Public Transport Network (IRPTN) station
Extension of the ICC
Development of a hotel to support the ICC
Expansion of retail area
Redevelopment of Gugu Dlamini Park
City Library
Council Chamber
Residential developments

Socio-economic benefits

Investment Value: R9.3billion
Annual Rates: R67-million
Construction Jobs: 3 350
Permanent Jobs: 1 350

Project status*
Urban design concept complete
Negotiations with Public Works to consolidate their facilities on site is at an advanced stage
Terms of reference for the appointment of the transactional advisor to develop an negotiate a development model are complete


Key issues / Challenges

Different understanding by City departments of site development priorities.
Delays in finalizing SCM for the library.
Funding constraints for bulk infrastructure (parking constraints)
Response and way forward
Finalize Public Works land sale agreement
Finalize the development model for the entire site
Finalize SCM issue around the development of the library
Commence with the IRPTN underground station construction
Finalize the feasibility of the extension of the ICC and hotel

*As at March 2017

More here: http://www.globalafricanetwork.com/...um-government-precinct-mixed-use-development/
 

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1. I see a lot of concrete - so the direction is towards making Durban look like Johannesburg or New York, not Miami.
2. The whole previously Indian area to the West (I think it's now called Grey Street complex) is already a nightmarishing concrete with horrible streets. So this gets extended!
3. They even decide to take away the whole bus and taxi rank up to ICC from the Workshop and put more concrete, thus I am not sure which side is their IRPTN, because the current bus ranks up to ICC is the ideal location for everybody to reach their workplace easily, since it is central.
4. It seems the plan is premised on total abolishment of taxi industry & private bus companies, i.e. the government wants my taxi money for themselves, i.e. from private businesses to government owned businesses! Frankly I wonder why is the government not fixing their train horror, which has been forever and ever.
- Basically I do not see where taxi and bus ranks to KwaMashu and all Northern villages of Durban get to be located, noting they get removed from the Government quarters.
5. I did suspect their allowing the decent small park between the Workshop and City hall to deteriorate was justification for them to turn it to concrete. So all in all the 400 000 people they want to bring to the City will be staying in concrete and playing in concrete (I do know New York is very wealthy and a concrete jungle, but at least has a large Central park and they have no plans to remove it. As such, I have a feeling they should be investing in their concrete by upgrading the Grey Street complex area)

I truly wonder if this designer is a Joburg fundi who is oblivious of the fact that Durban has vast rural areas and transport to and from the city from these areas.
 

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you been to Miami? its concrete city and probably the the longest city skyline after Atlanta in the states

just out of curiosity how do you create development, investment, housing, places for work if you dont use concrete?
 

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In an ideal world the taxi industry should be gone. It is not an efficient way to transport large numbers of people are a massive metro. That's the intended role of Go Durban. With the rail spine and brt trunks.

As with the comments on concrete. How do you density a CBD to grow the inner city core population without higher density? I still see loads of green space in that render. Parks, treed streets. The beach is but a 1km away. Cities can be dense and green, that comes down to urban maintenance, something I would agree does not exist in Grey Street area. That node needs green softening landscaping. But that should not be used to write off this.

I do feel this is still years off. They have been planning forever. Once we see a firm commitment and development then I will trust it is moving ahead
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I like! Thanks for posting. :)

Seems to be based closely on the original render posted in the first post on this thread. A few intriguing and positive things I noted:

1. There's a tall building opposite the Hilton. I assume this is a hotel? But what's that huge, long, joined / continuous structure joined to it? It appears to be offices, but could the lower levels be an extension to the ICC campus?

2. I love the multiple public spaces. I was hoping that this site would not be super-dense low blocks without green / open air spaces. The biggest is the current Gugu Dlamini Park, which has been seamlessly and neatly incorporated into the site and the wider precinct. I assume the open spaces could also be used for major city events hosted at the ICC, as is currently the case.

3. The square building on the other side of the park: I am wondering if this is the proposed new city central library?
 

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Im happy with this proposal too, like you say. But also happy it is keeping transport systems apart from Go Durban in place, given Durban has rural communities and taxis which must reach the city centre too. Noted one of main ranks has bn removed. I trust they will build a taxi rank on the older part of the city along this development; something like Bree taxi rank in Joburg.

We all can see what was expected regarding Rapid Bus transport systems: Busses in Joburg are packed to rafters and many people have gone back to taxis than stand in these busses all the way. It was never going to be the absolute solution; rather SA remains too undermining of train systems, which need a 50/50 public private partnership to move to far better efficiency and useful by middle income earners as well.
 

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I like! Thanks for posting. :)

Seems to be based closely on the original render posted in the first post on this thread. A few intriguing and positive things I noted:

1. There's a tall building opposite the Hilton. I assume this is a hotel? But what's that huge, long, joined / continuous structure joined to it? It appears to be offices, but could the lower levels be an extension to the ICC campus?

2. I love the multiple public spaces. I was hoping that this site would not be super-dense low blocks without green / open air spaces. The biggest is the current Gugu Dlamini Park, which has been seamlessly and neatly incorporated into the site and the wider precinct. I assume the open spaces could also be used for major city events hosted at the ICC, as is currently the case.

3. The square building on the other side of the park: I am wondering if this is the proposed new city central library?
The tall structure is most likely a hotel.

Next to it is the current exhibition centre. Based on the naming ETHEXC, I gather it is a rebuilt expo space, to substantially improve that offer.
 

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Im happy with this proposal too, like you say. But also happy it is keeping transport systems apart from Go Durban in place, given Durban has rural communities and taxis which must reach the city centre too. Noted one of main ranks has bn removed. I trust they will build a taxi rank on the older part of the city along this development; something like Bree taxi rank in Joburg.

We all can see what was expected regarding Rapid Bus transport systems: Busses in Joburg are packed to rafters and many people have gone back to taxis than stand in these busses all the way. It was never going to be the absolute solution; rather SA remains too undermining of train systems, which need a 50/50 public private partnership to move to far better efficiency and useful by middle income earners as well.
The transit plans from a few years ago envisaged a spur of the rail line coming into an underground station within this development. This then had a multi modal transport hub that incorporated taxis and busses off street in a purpose built facility. This would take these into a more controlled environment and formalise them a bit. It's needed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The tall structure is most likely a hotel.

Next to it is the current exhibition centre. Based on the naming ETHEXC, I gather it is a rebuilt expo space, to substantially improve that offer.
I initially thought this was on the Centrum site, parallel to the Exhibition Centre, on the other side of the road. But you're right. The long building is *exactly* where the current Exhibition Centre complex is located. It didn't even occur to me that the renders represent a replacement as I assumed the current buildings there (including where Tilt night club used to be) are protected heritage buildings (not sure how they will go around this to build this massive structure).

Seen in the context of replacement, ETHEXC could stand for EThewini Exhibition Centre. :)

If this proposal goes ahead, the new structure will definitely be exhibition space and *drastically* increase the size (and offering) of the ICC campus. :cheers:
 

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I do likes that a LOT...

Would be nice to see the Workshop get a bit of love with something like this as well...

I'm intrigued by the 4 fans in the renders... would be interesting to know what the intent with them is...
I presume like the tower in Elephant and Castle in London.... Fluff that won't work for long
 

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I presume like the tower in Elephant and Castle in London.... Fluff that won't work for long
That would be my concern really.. That they have great intentions for them to maybe reduce the energy consumption of the building or something of that sort and they will cost a small fortune but not be maintained properly so just fail in short order...
 

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That would be my concern really.. That they have great intentions for them to maybe reduce the energy consumption of the building or something of that sort and they will cost a small fortune but not be maintained properly so just fail in short order...
It's a scheme plan. Not a locked architectural design. I am sure that building will never see the light of day
 
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