eThekwini development thrives

Municipal study shows socio-economic impact

Valley View
Study to determine socio economic impact

Following the successful sale of all properties in the River Horse Valley Business Estate, the eThekwini Municipality funded a study to determine the socio-economic impact of this development on the immediate site and surrounding of the eThekwini economy at large.

The study was undertaken in partnership with Tongaat Hulett Development and the River Horse Valley Business Estate Management Association.

Denny Thaver, project manager in the municipality’s Economic Development and Investment Promotion Unit said: “The objectives of the study were firstly to confirm the impact to date of the estate in terms of the local economy, employment and investment and, secondly, to provide urban management decision-makers with a better understanding of what can be done to further support the growth of businesses, employment and opportunities in the River Horse Valley.”

It was estimated that the estate currently generates annual rates amounting to R83.5-million and this will increase as the development of sites in the estate continue.

The development of the estate not only supports the densification strategies of eThekwini, but also facilitate the development of critical urban infrastructure, specifically the construction of Queen Nandi Drive contributing to the structuring of the colonial and apartheid urban landscape by providing improved linkages between residential and business townships.

Chair of the economic development committee and deputy mayor, Nomvuzo Shabalala, said the release of the study was welcomed news.

“It has shown a lot of positives, especially in job creation, investment and rates generation”.

She said despite the few challenges where the study has shown that black economic empowerment and small business development targets have not been achieved, there is a potential to achieve this.

“More than 17 000 people are employed at the estate with over 12 000 being permanent and the contract workforce is just over 4 000.

People from the Inanda, Ntuzuma, KwaMashu area  (INK), Avoca Hills and Newlands have benefited immensely from this development and we are very happy about that,” she added.

Tindall Kruger from Strategic Planning Resources who was commissioned to undertake the survey said the initiative confirms the value of public-private sector partnerships.

“The study sets benchmarks to be used in future to evaluate other city investments.”

Kruger said the assessment of the estate showed that it attracted and retained major companies.“It created and retained jobs, boosted municipal rates, facilitated investment and enhanced the urban environment and infrastructure.

 

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