Six years after being commissioned, the elephant sculptures at the Warwick Junction / N3 split are being prepared for an official opening in May.
Contractors are putting in new paving blocks and landscaping is going in around the four wire-and-stone sculptures, giving the area a facelift.
Artist Andries Botha said the municipality was finalising the preparation of the site for the proposed official opening in May.
A date has yet to be set.
“Three months ago, the eThekwini Municipality put out a tender and it went through the process. This week a contractor was appointed to fix up the site. In discussions with the city, I suggested having some movement in the paving design. It should be a ‘water’-like look,” Botha said.
The elephant sculptures have been embroiled in controversy since they were first built.
The municipality commissioned Botha to create the three-elephant sculptures in 2009, ahead of the 2010 Fifa World Cup, but in 2010 an ANC politician ordered work to stop because the elephants were deemed to be symbols of the IFP political party.
The sculptures were then vandalised to the point where they had to be rebuilt in 2014.
A fourth elephant has also been added.
During a council meeting last year, city manager Sibusiso Sithole said the City would spend R1.3 million to upgrade the area around the sculptures by laying paving and upgrading the landscaping.
“Finally, hopefully, the elephants will be formally accepted as part of the city. The transfer of security at the site is now in the hands of the city,” Botha said.