​EThekwini Municipality will be holding a public meeting to allow interested stakeholders to give their input on the proposed public realm upgrades of the Rivertown Precinct.

Affected businesses, other stakeholders as well as the Chamber of Commerce and Industry are encouraged to attend the meeting to use the platform to comment and make suggestions on the proposed upgrades.

The Rivertown Precinct is situated to the east of the Durban Central Business District, between the City’s Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre (ICC) and the Durban beachfront. The precinct was formally Durban’s light industrial area with several low-rise warehouses, some of which have significant historical value.

The proposed upgrade to the area is in line with the City’s vision of becoming a liveable City through creating liveable mixed-use spaces, which form part of the City’s urban renewal plan.  The precinct will capture the rhythm and spirit of Durban’s beach lifestyle while incorporating the amazing culture of the City. 

EThekwini Mayor Zandile Gumede said the intention of the proposed upgrade is to re-use and transform the characteristics of the warehouses which are predominant in this precinct.

“At the centre of this transformation is to pedestrianise John Milne Street with restaurants, shops and small craft markets on either side to create an unprecedented experience for our local, intercontinental and international tourists,” she said.

Plans are afoot to ensure that Rivertown is a destination for a diverse and sophisticated inner-city community with a mix of contemporary apartments, offices and cultural venues of different sizes.

Mayor Gumede said the Rivertown precinct will showcase the best in contemporary design while retaining strong links to its rich heritage. She said chimney stacks and industrial relics will stand as landmarks of the past. 

“Heritage buildings will be repurposed and reimagined for contemporary activities.  Street and outdoor spaces will become exciting open-air galleries and stages for performances,” Mayor Gumede added.

The development will include the Beer Hall node and Spice Emporium which are located in the precinct. This will create stronger links between the facility and its built context through improved urban design, resurfacing of exterior areas to create easily trafficable surfaces and a more inclusive facility for all residents.

It will also showcase local culture through creating a spice museum with an exhibition and audio-visual information on spices, an auditorium for cooking classes and an educational herb and spice garden.

Members of the public and media are invited to attend the meeting as follows:

VENUE: Durban ICC Room 11AB
DATE   : 31 May 2017
TIME    :  11h00.
 
For more information and to attend the upgrade of the Rivertown Precinct meeting, contact Themba Masimula on 031 311 7841 or email: themba.masimula@durban.gov.za
 
Issued by the eThekwini Municipality’s Head of Communications, Tozi Mthethwa.