Pretoria – The Centurion Lake development as well as the opening of a new taxi rank in the same business node appear to have stalled in recent months.
Phase 1 of the Centurion Lake development, the preparation work for the long-term plan, was originally scheduled for completion in August.
It was envisaged that it would be completed in five months. However, work has yet to start.
The state of the lake has, over the years, had a negative effect on businesses at Centurion Mall.
According to City of Tshwane spokesperson Lindela Mashigo, since there was no approved tender for the revival of the lake, funds allocated for the project were used for more pressing service-delivery requirements, such as electricity, water, sanitation and road maintenance.
Mashigo said that in the interim, the City was appointing a contractor from its panel of service providers for the design of the development.
“Plans to dredge the lake and develop it are still afoot. The service provider is expected to be (chosen) by the end of September,” Mashigo said.
Last year, then mayor Stevens Mokgalapa said a concrete slab would be cast over it for a park or wetland with a river by-pass.
The intention was to relieve pressure on the stormwater systems that flow into the lake. There are six outlets, three on either side of the lake.
The silt levels are putting stress on the main outfall sewer that runs parallel to the lake on the southern side.
“The lake was not constructed in such a way to deal with the extent of pollution and accumulated sediment from upstream municipalities,” Mashigo said.
The lake was built in the early 1980s as a focus point for a new commercial area developed by the defunct Verwoerdburg municipality. It soon became a nightmare, largely due to the pollution.
The City has pumped millions of rand into the project between 2010 and 2016 in an effort to improve the situation.
The construction of the taxi rank on the corner of South Street and Hendrik Verwoerd Drive is complete, but the facility has yet to open.
Construction on the R12 million, 10000m² site to accommodate 55 taxis started in August last year.
The plan was to open it for business in February, but this was postponed because the entrance had to be adjusted. Shortly after that the country went into lockdown.
The taxi rank is divided into two sections – holding and loading.
Redefine Properties is responsible for its construction, as part of its corporate social investment initiative.
Selby Bokaba of the City of Tshwane said the contractor was putting the final touches to the site.
He said the metro was engaging with various taxi associations to ensure that everybody was accommodated.
“As soon as the engagement process is complete and all parties are content, the City will officially open the taxi rank.
“Communities around the area and other stakeholders will be notified once the launch date has been determined,” Bokaba said.
The taxi rank will have offices for taxi associations, 22 informal kiosks for traders as well as public toilets.
More than 15000 commuters are expected to use the facility, which will also have free wi-fi.