New R1.9-billion industrial park breaks ground at Giba Gorge
The R1.9-billion Giba Business Estate, the largest light industrial and logistics development to break ground within Durban’s Outer West in more than three years, will not only create hundreds of short term and permanent jobs but also significantly boost the greater eThekwini region’s GDP.
Speaking at the official sod turning for the development on Wednesday, August 16, spokesperson for developers Sultex Investments, Nel Nathoo and Shaaz Moosa, explained that the development marked the opening up of new land for industrial development that was up until now zoned for agricultural use.
Strategically located adjacent to the west bound carriageway of the Mariannhill Toll Plaza along the N3, it will rejuvenate the Giba Business Park, creating important business opportunities for the logistics and SMME light industrial sectors.
“Sultex Holdings is a black owned company with a level one BBBEE score. It comprises a group of local Durban businessmen who are collectively undertaking this prestigious project as an expression of its commitment to the eThekwini region. This substantial investment in this project is testimony to their confidence in the region,” he said.
“Sultex Holdings has employed a full black professional team. The development is being led by Nathoo Mbeyane Engineers and Re-Invent Property Development Managers, companies whose track records have led to the commencement of the project,” he added.
The Westmead Industrial Park and the Mahogany Ridge Industrial Park lie to the North-East of Giba Business Estate, making this a natural extension of this sought after industrial node along the busy route Durban Gauteng corridor. It offers easy access to all major national highways. The N3, N2, and the M7 interchanges are all less than 10km away, providing access to both northbound and southbound routes.
The development, which has been earmarked as one of the city’s key catalytic projects by the eThekwini Municipality, will see the development of 220 000 square meters of platformed sites of various sizes. The Giba Business Estate comprises 22 sites aimed at light industry, warehousing and the allied logistics sectors.
Nathoo said that the Giba Business Estate would be developed in two phases. Work had already begun on the infrastructure and platforms for the first phase which was due for completion in July 2024.
The upgrades to both this and the N2 form part of national government’s Strategic Integrated Projects, SIP2: Durban-Free State-Gauteng Logistics and Industrial Corridor. SIP2 aims to strengthen the logistics and transport corridor between South Africa’s main industrial hubs, improve access to Durban’s export and import facilities and raise efficiency along the corridor.
Nathoo added that the launch of the project also corresponded with other major projects within the Outer West corridor such as the development of the Cato Ridge dry port and logistics hub by Transnet, further development of the Hammarsdale precinct by various stakeholders and the creation of Westown at Ntshongweni which has been pitched as the new residential and commercial hub for Durban’s Outer West. It is expected to generate approximately R15 billion in investment over the next 10 -15 years.
Attending the sod turning Pravin Gordan said he endorsed the project that on completion it would give long term employment to 4661 local community which will uplift the area.
Speaking at the ceremony, eThekwini mayor, Councillor Mxolisi Kaunda, said that the Giba Business Estate represented a silver lining for eThekwini and thanked the consortium of investors for its vote of confidence in the future of the city as an investment destination.
“Catalyst projects such as this one are planned and designed to cause a corresponding and complementary. development reaction. They are projects of sufficient magnitude to stimulate ongoing redevelopment. The Giba Business Estate is much like Cornubia and Riverhorse Valley to the north of the city and the proposed Automotive Supplier Park to the south. It is an important part of the City’s 10 Point Port City Industrial Plan which will not only begin to re- industrialise the city but ensure continued sustainable economic growth for the region,” he said.
Moosa said that the Giba Business Estate presented important turnkey development opportunities for investors as well as SMME’s and other end users. Companies and manufacturing entities could construct their own bespoke developments catering for their specific configurations and needs.
Whilst kick starting industrial growth in the area, the project also supports the eco-tourism aspect of Giba Gorge. It is expected to have a significant social impact on the neighbouring informal community both in terms of job creation and by increasing business opportunities within the logistics industry and SMME light industrial sectors.
The Giba Business Estate encompasses eco-friendly green zones aimed at reducing the site’s carbon footprint and environmental impact. Infrastructure to support high-speed fibre and solar electricity generation as well as state-of-the-art security have also been included in the planning.