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Aerotropolis plan promises huge economic spin-offs


The aerotropolis’ catalytic projects are set to change the landscape of joblessness in the metro and the province.

The metro has approved the 30-year Ekurhuleni Aerotropolis master plan, paving the way for a socio-economic impact projected at R8.1-billion per annum.

The mayor talks about the aerotropolis. Image - Germiston City News

The aerotropolis’ catalytic projects, using labour-intensive scenarios, promise massive job creation and are set to change the landscape of joblessness in the metro and the wider Gauteng province.

The executive mayor of Ekurhuleni, Mzwandile Masina, said the aerotropolis is envisaged to be a game-changing intervention that will facilitate spatial, economic and social transformation, repositioning the regional economy as an ideal destination for trade, investment and tourism.

“The City of Ekurhuleni, the Gauteng Provincial Government and the Airports Company South Africa have embarked on the development of the Ekurhuleni Aerotropolis,” Masina said.

“This programme is a deliberate growth trajectory that aims to reposition and enhance the value proposition of the Gauteng city region, with a particular emphasis on the Ekurhuleni regional economy as the footprint of the first aerotropolis on the African continent.”

The Ekurhuleni Aerotropolis will leverage on the presence of OR Tambo International Airport, which handles 19-million passengers a year and has the capacity for 60-million passengers.

OR Tambo International also handles 83 per cent of all air cargo movements in the country, thus playing a critical economic role for South Africa, Gauteng and Ekurhuleni.

The 30-year master plan, the mayor said, has been developed to identify projects – in sectors such as retail, aerospace, advanced manufacturing, logistics and distribution, research and development, health and life sciences – that will act as enablers of an economic turnaround.

Furthermore, the mayor indicated that critical road infrastructure networks are being prioritised to unlock the footprint of the aerotropolis to enable mobility, integration and densification.

“OR Tambo International Airport is in a good position to accelerate its logistic and air cargo activities regionally.

“The airport is already a gateway for the transit of high value time-sensitive products, such as electronic equipment, as well as textiles and footwear for nearby countries,” Masina said.

At the centre of the master plan is a redesign of the metro’s layout, with infrastructure and economic activities to be centred on the airport.

Masina explained that the funding of the Ekurhuleni Aerotropolis project will require a multi-layered approach that is capable of leveraging on the financial capabilities of the private and public sector.

The funding plan calls for strategic partnerships between all stakeholders through a systematic integrated development planning process in order to deliver the strategic objectives of the aerotropolis.

These stakeholders will include the government, development finance institutions, property owners, developers and investors, research and development agencies, higher learning institutions, external funders and underwriters.


LINK - https://germistoncitynews.co.za/166560/aerotropolis-plan-promises-huge-economic-spin-offs/

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