Cape Town – It would be at least two years before construction starts on the new Foreshore Freeway development, the City of Cape Town hoped, after six proposed designs were unveiled at the Cape Town Civic Centre on Monday.
The public viewing period closes on March 21 and the subsequent evaluation process would take around four months due to the technical complexities and scale of the development.
The private sector proposals were met with mixed reactions with some welcoming the proposals and bold designs, while others claimed the development would exacerbate “classism” and the divide between the city’s poorer and wealthier residents.
Once presentations have been made to the multi-disciplinary Bid Evaluation Committee (BEC), the recommended bidders would be announced.
Six months after signing an agreement with the City, bidders are expected to secure financing for the project.
The proposals followed a call by the Transport and Urban Development Authority and Mayor Patricia De Lille for the private sector to submit design proposals and unlock the potential of the unfinished bridges and associated precinct on the Foreshore.
Each of the six proposals had to address Cape Town’s traffic woes, as well as have an affordable housing component.
Transport and Urban Development Authority councillor Brett Herron said: “It must leave us with a lasting legacy.”
The six proposals included intricate designs providing a glimpse into the architectural future of the Foreshore.
Most of the designs addressed the issue of traffic by proposing extra lanes flowing in the same direction to avoid congestion.
The proposals further included extra parking, other services and green-belt parks alongside the freeway with futuristic designs including domes and pods.
Victor Mothibi, 26, from Parklands said: “For me, I feel like none of these proposals bridge the gap of classism. The people who would be going to this place with these fancy designs would be people that can afford it."
“I like that they’re doing something about these overhanging bridges, but I just feel that there isn’t much else I’m liking about it because I saw one proposal with a circle, which I don’t understand because it would take a lot of money to construct and again takes away from something else.”
Abduragiem Samuels, 51, from Woodstock said: “These proposals look quite nice and are very interesting. When development takes place, it’s a better life for everybody, that’s how I look at construction.”
Proposal A is a “new highly liveable affordable housing neighbourhood with amenities in the City,” its description read.
“New inner inner city leisure and sports facilities, new school facilities. New inner city medical and health services, new linear urban plaza, entrepreneurial incubation hub, new major inner city park and ride facilities. New MyCiTi stations, centralised MyCiTi depot, TCT Asset and Licensing department, mixed use residential quarter and garden bridge park.”
Proposal B included tunnels said: “The bid submissions will provide tunnels for the Foreshore Freeways, public transport and transport modal interchanges. “A world recognised iconic tower, around 158 000 square metres of public open spaces, around 400 000 square metres of residential space comprising 4400 housing units 1000 of which are for the affordable rental market. Around 95 000 square metres of retail, educational and social facilities, a public art programme, 12 000 car parking spaces and a sustainable precinct development” would be built.
Proposal C was to simply complete the project and connect the unfinished highways, leaving the “outbound freeway carriageway free of traffic (which) can be transformed into an elevated urban park with exciting views and opportunities”.
Proposal D was for a “site that is open and accessible to all members of the various communities.
Proposal E read: “CITYLIFT will include a new metropolitan scale urban park running along the length of the elevated podium, delivering recreational spaces.”
Proposal F was for 450 affordable housing units. De Lille added similar projects would follow with other developments in Paardevlei, Athlone, Bellville and Philippi.