Work has officially started on a plan to completely redevelop and expand the Bushbuckridge shopping centre in Mpumalanga Province.
Last November, Nthoese Development hosted a sod-turning ceremony to mark the commencement of the redevelopment and expansion of Bushbuckridge shopping centre to address social-economic challenges in the area.
The shopping centre is located at the corner of R40 and R533 in Bushbuckridge CBD which is portion 8 (a portion of portion 5) of the farm Maviljan 252 measuring 7,4608 hectares. The R40 is the main north-south road through the municipal area. It links Nelspruit through Hazyview to Phalaborwa Limpopo.
Bushbuckridge Urban Renewal Programme is a scheme introduced by the Bushbuckridge Local Municipality to address the social-economic challenges in the area. The scheme will provide, but not limited to, public modal transport, social facilities, commercial and tourism facilities.
Today Nthoese Development, in association with Sampanda Private Equity and the Bushbuckridge Local Municipality, announced that it has commenced the redevelopment and expansion of Bushbuckridge shopping centre.
“We aim to centre the community through long-lasting facilities and job opportunities to empower those that have been the most hard-hit by growing unemployment and poverty rates,” said Herbert Theledi, Founder and Managing Director of Nthoese Development.
According to Statistics South Africa, the country’s unemployment rate has hit a new record high of 34.4%, 7.826 million people, in the second quarter of 2021. This is a disturbing increase from the 32.6%, 7.242 million people, in the first quarter. 2021’s unemployment rate sets a record for the highest since the labour force survey began in 2008.
As a result, there is an increase in crime rates and a dependency on unemployment grants, which are not sustainable for South Africans and the economy in the long run. This poses a challenge to local businesses as high unemployment rates mean less economic participation and more businesses being forced to retrench, downsize, or completely close. As a result, unemployment and crime rates will continue to grow. This will affect the government’s functionality and the maintenance of a thriving, peaceful society.
With the redevelopment and expansion of the Bushbuckridge shopping centre, Nthoese Development is set to create 1, 140 jobs during construction and 623 full-time jobs post construction.
The long-term goal of this project is to ensure the local community benefits beyond a new shopping centre and job opportunities. Nthoese Development, having received the Critical Infrastructure Programming funding from the Department of Trade and Industry, will expand their Bushbuckridge shopping centre development to include construction and improvement of roads, stormwater, water, and sewerage facilities.
Access to clean water and efficient public roads are basic human rights. By expanding development this way, Nthoese Development ensures a dignified life for Bushbuckridge residents, and hopefully a decrease in road accidents and contaminated-water illnesses.
Furthermore, Nthoese Development will construct a bus terminal and taxi rank to address infrastructure challenges faced by the community. This will ease movement around the CBD.
In doing so, Nthoese Development guarantees local people are not inconvenienced by lack of access to safe public transport hubs and roads for their commute.
The new Bushbuckridge shopping centre was officially opened on 18 November 2021. Among the dignitaries in attendance during the official opening was the Deputy Police Cassel Mathale, who gave a keynote address and Bushbuckridge Municipal Manager Cynthia Nkuna.
As part of CSI and investment into the community during the opening of the Mall both CEOs of Nthoese and Sampanda have handed over 5 new Toyota Agya’s to the local taxi associations and also donated cycling gear to the Bushbuckridge Cycling Academy.
“This project is truly about community building and the impact on development project can have one access to skillsets, work opportunities and a better quality of life for the local communities. Every project undertaken by Nthoese Development will always prioritise the well-being and empowerment of the local people and economy,” concluded Theledi.