Pietermaritzburg situated in the Msunduzi Municipality, is the second largest city within KwaZulu-Natal and the fifth largest city in South Africa. Pietermaritzburg is the capital city of the Province of KwaZulu-Natal and the main economic hub
within Umgungundlovu District Municipality. Set amidst forested hills and the rolling countryside of the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, Pietermaritzburg is a vibrant African city. Steeped in history, with isiZulu, Afrikaans, English and Indian influences, the city pulses with diversity and colour.
The city has increasingly become an attractive investment destination due to its proximity to the Durban Port, and its strategic location on the N3 corridor. This is borne out by the number of development projects on the cards in the Ashburton
area south east of the municipality, which has been identified in the city's Spatial Development Framework as an economic opportunity node. The predictions of significant growth on the N3 corridor between the eThekwini and Msunduzi municipalities are becoming a reality, and the municipality is currently making an assessment of the bulk infrastructure requirements in the node for future development.
Given the scale of the key development projects in various stages of preparedness, and the development opportunities that will be advertised shortly, the Capital City of KwaZulu-Natal is poised for significant growth in the coming years.
There has been tremendous activity in the property market over the last few years in this area south east of the city. All of this land was in the ownership of the private sector, mainly unproductive agricultural land that has been vacant for decades. The challenges in facilitating development in the area include large tracks of environmentally sensitive land, and the lack of bulk infrastructure.
Development projects currently being proposed include residential estates, hotel and conferencing, commercial including a regional shopping centre, light industrial and logistics and warehousing. Just the light industrial/warehousing developments proposed will result in 4 400 new jobs being created, should the developments be completed. Two of the projects have been through the rezoning process, and the developers are ready to go to ground.
The suburbs that lie to the west of the city are home to more than half the population of the city. Unfortunately, the area has not attracted large scale investment and development over the years. However, all that is about to change. There has been unprecedented interest in investment in the area, with the new Greater Edendale Mall perhaps being the catalyst. This shopping centre was opened in September 2011, a R350 million investment that has created 1000 jobs, providing a one-stop shopping experience for residents in the area. Land in the area around the mall has attracted interest, and is certain to be developed in the next few years.
The municipality has been given a grant, part of the Neighbourhood Development Programme, to enhance the attractiveness and investment potential of the identified economic opportunity nodes in the area. The first project is underway in Imbali, one of the largest suburbs in the area.
The municipality has also been enabled through a grant by the Department of Land Affairs, to purchase large portions of privately owned land that has been populated with uncontrolled informal housing structures over the years. Five housing
projects that will provide formal houses will be rolled out in the next few years. The municipality is also planning to develop Ambleton City, a self-contained mini city within the city, south west of the municipality where large numbers of low cost houses have been developed.
Current Development Projects
Freedom Square Tourism Hub
This project in the city's central square will provide accommodation for the tourism related businesses that operate in the region. The building is designed to provide opportunities for businesses to exhibit and market their products, as well as to provide office accommodation, and facilities for tour buses including a modern waiting room for tourists.
Camp's Drift Waterfront Development
This 132 000m² mixed use development situated on the canalized portion of the Duzi River, close to the start of the annual Duzi Canoe Marathon will comprise a core waterfront zone with entertainment, restaurants, a hotel and offices, a retail component and a residential component.
Life-style Centre - Liberty Phase 3
The Phase 3 development of the Liberty Mall will add another 21 000 m² of retail, office and lifestyle development, an investment of R500 million.
Hayfields Hotel and Housing Complex
The 120 room Road Lodge style hotel development with an investment of R200 million includes an apartment complex. It is situated off the N3 at the New England Road interchange.
Lincoln Meade Housing Development
The 1509 unit mixed income housing development in Lincoln Meade, at the intersection of New England and Gladys Manzi Roads, will be constructed over a five year period. The following development sites will be advertised shortly:
The six hectare commercial site off the N3 is the balance of the Polocrosse site in the CBD Extension Node where the Municipality's "Motor City" has been developed. The preferred uses specified by council emanate from an independent study for the CBD Extension Node, and include : wholesale/retail, hotel, conference facility, public entertainment, motor showrooms and retail, and specialised markets.
Caravan Park/Cleland Road Site
The 17 hectare site between the N3 Highway and Cleland Road in Hayfields, stretching from the old Caravan Park site to the Market Road interchange will be a mixed use development.
Municipal Demarcation Board Code: KZN225
Location of Head Office: Pietermaritzburg is
77km northwest of Durban (N3)
Municipal Area (km²): 649 km²
Population (estimated): ± 600 000
By 2017 to be a Globally Competitive
Metropolitan City of Choice which Capitalizes
on its Strategic Location, Environment,
Cultural Heritage and Educational Facilities
Creating a Choice Quality of Life for All.