Durban’s industrial landscape is set for a significant transformation with the breaking ground of the R1.9 billion Giba Business Estate on Wednesday.
The launch was attended by Minister of Public Enterprises, Pravin Gordhan, eThekwini Mayor, Councillor Mxolisi Kaunda, and the developers, Shaaz Mossa and Nel Nathoo from Sultex Investments.
Marking the most substantial light industrial and logistics venture in Durban’s outer west in over three years, the Giba Business Estate promises to be a beacon of economic growth.
Beyond the bricks and mortar, it's anticipated to generate hundreds of jobs in the short term, with thousands more in the long run, significantly enhancing the eThekwini region's GDP.
Interestingly, this vast expanse was previously earmarked for agriculture.
Its transformation underscores the government's commitment to fostering business investments.
Gordhan emphasised the government's role in streamlining processes for businesses, advocating for swift decision-making and reduced bureaucratic hurdles. He commended the City’s Catalytic Projects Unit, stating, “We must empower our youth to be entrepreneurs, driving economic growth and job creation. Ensuring inclusivity and shared prosperity is paramount. We're grateful to the investors for their trust in the City.”
The ceremonial sod-turning, attended by local community members, was a testament to the project's significance, the City said in a statement.
Mayor Kaunda highlighted the transformative potential of the Giba Business Park, likening it to other pivotal projects like the Keystone Logistics Park in Hammarsdale, Westown in Shongweni, and the Dry Port in Cato Ridge.
These ventures collectively infuse billions into the region.
"This R1.9 billion project is a testament to our commitment to bolstering the logistics sector along the N3 corridor, creating nearly 5,000 jobs and fostering local entrepreneurship. Moreover, it's projected to contribute over R60 million in municipal rates within three years of its inception," Kaunda said..
Strategically positioned near the Mariannhill Toll Plaza on the N3, the Giba Business Park is poised to rejuvenate its namesake, offering lucrative opportunities in logistics and light industrial sectors.
The developers say Its proximity to major industrial parks and national highways makes it an attractive proposition for businesses.
The estate, recognized as a key catalytic project by the eThekwini Municipality, will sprawl across 220,000 square metres, housing 22 sites tailoured for light industry, warehousing, and logistics. Nathoo revealed a phased development approach, with the first phase set to conclude by July 2024. The estate's location, close to the N3 undergoing a R20 billion upgrade by SANRAL, offers added value to early investors.
Highlighting the national significance, the upgrades to the N3 and N2 are part of the government's Strategic Integrated Projects, aimed at bolstering the logistics corridor between major industrial hubs and enhancing Durban's export-import facilities.
For Kaunda, the Giba Business Estate is a beacon of hope for eThekwini, symbolising investor confidence in the city's future.
"Such catalyst projects stimulate further development. Giba Business Estate stands alongside projects like Cornubia and Riverhorse Valley, integral to the City’s 10 Point Port City Industrial Plan, ensuring sustained economic growth," he remarked.
Moosa emphasised the estate's potential to offer bespoke solutions for businesses, catering to specific needs. In line with global sustainability trends, the estate will feature eco-friendly zones, high-speed fibre infrastructure, solar electricity generation, and state-of-the-art security, ensuring a balance between industrial growth and environmental responsibility.