Cape Town to get rid of ‘useless’ unfinished highways

THE City of Cape Town is on a quest to rid itself of its “useless” unfinished highways on the foreshore.

Mayor Patricia de Lille said on Tuesday the unfinished highways were “useless”, other than for film shoots, and were inhibiting the development of prime city-owned land known as the foreshore freeway precinct.

The land is locked under and between highways and the harbour.

De Lille said the city would issue a document in July, calling on prospective investors and developers, or a consortium, to provide a solution which will address congestion in the precinct.

“This document will provide interested parties with all of the necessary information about the city-owned land that we will make available to the private sector in return for the provision of road infrastructure and a development that will drive sustainable growth,” said De Lille.

The unfinished highways, situated on the western, central and eastern side of the foreshore freeway precinct, have been part of Cape Town’s landscape for nearly 50 years.

In the 1970s, when engineers designed the freeways and began work on the project, traffic flowing into and out of the city was manageable.

The project was abandoned because of a lack of funds and low traffic volumes that did not warrant further investment.

However, times have changed and Cape Town has become one of the most congested cities in the country.

The metro has committed R750m over the next five years to address congestion in the city.

A key requirement for bidders is that their development proposals must resolve congestion and provide the city with an affordable housing component.

Earlier in June, De Lille said the metro’s unfinished bridge would most likely be connected to the road that runs on to the city’s N1.

Another exit road would be built parallel to the N1 entry/exit road near the current Cape Yacht Club, she added.

Brett Herron, Cape Town mayoral committee member for transport, said prospective bidders would be required to present scale models of their designs for the foreshore freeway precinct.

These models would be on display at the Civic Centre, where the public could view them.

“The public will be able to comment on the bidders’ proposals and designs, and their input will be taken into consideration when the city decides on the preferred bidder for the development of the precinct,” said Herron.

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