By Suren Naidoo
Construction on Durban's new R6,8-billion international airport and Dube TradePort should have started last Friday amid incredibly tight deadlines to open the facility in March 2010.
But the Airports Company of South Africa (Acsa) has not yet got the green light from the department of environmental affairs and tourism.
Speaking at a Durban Chamber of Commerce and Industry business breakfast on Wednesday, Sean van der Valk, Acsa's project leader for the Dube TradePort, said: "The environmental impact assessment report has been sent to the department of environmental affairs and tourism and we are now expecting a record of decision by Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk, optimistically before the end of the month or in early July in order to start construction straight away."
In anticipation, advertisements for the supply of materials and subcontracting work like landscaping and partitioning were set to be published in newspapers from this weekend. This comes just weeks after Acsa officially signed the multibillion-rand construction and design contract of the airport with the Ilembe Consortium.