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BCC seeks partners for Emganwini flats

by Staff reporter
31 Aug 2021 at 06:08hrs | Views
Bulawayo City Council (BCC) is set to construct residential flats in Emganwini and is inviting financially sound investors to partner the local authority in delivering homes to residents. Public private partnerships (PPPs) is one of the models that Government has adopted to advance the development agenda.

Bulawayo is grappling with depleting land resource yet the number of home seekers continues to increase. The housing waiting list in Bulawayo has surpassed 100 000 and BCC views PPPs as a solution providing homes to residents.

In a public notice yesterday, Bulawayo town clerk Mr Christopher Dube invited financially sound institutions and individuals to partner the local authority in the construction of residential flats in Emganwini suburb.

"The City of Bulawayo is inviting interested developers, companies, or institutions, individuals and or any other forms of partnership such as consortium, joint ventures etc, with development finance to express interest to undertake the development of high-rise residential flats on stand 2977 Emganwini. The development has been necessitated by the rising demand for housing," said Mr Dube.

"The development would be fully expected to fund the construction and all internal reticulation in terms of servicing the stand. The scope of the works required is indicated below: internal water reticulation, internal sewer reticulation, internal roads infrastructure and internal public lighting, construction of flats up to habitable level."

He said those interested in partnering with the local authority should provide a detailed company's profile, company's registration documents, proof of funding considered adequate to finance the developments, experience in developments of similar nature and traceable references.

BCC corporate communications manager Mrs Nesisa Mpofu said the development is in line with the National Development Strategy (NDS) 1.

"The Government of Zimbabwe through the NDS 1 and the Zimbabwe Human Settlement policy encourages the development of high-rise buildings for accommodation. This is the direction that we are also taking as a city where new layouts for residential accommodation consist of 40 percent as high rise in line with the Government direction. The development of high-rise buildings will help alleviate challenges of accommodation and address the rising demand for housing," said Mrs Mpofu.

She said residents should expect to see more flats being constructed in the city.

"The Emganwini Flats will be a set pacer to guide council on the uptake and we are calling on all interested developers, Companies or Institutions, individuals and or any other forms of partnerships such as consortiums, joint ventures etc, with development finance and innovative ideas to express interest to undertake the development of high-rise residential flats on stand 2977 Emganwini," she said.

Bulawayo mayor Councillor Solomon Mguni said land is a finite resource hence as city fathers they have to plan for future generations.

"In future, this will guide our housing strategy and land management as we strive to provide housing to our residents. This is long overdue, we have lost vast tracts of land and the approach now should be to densify even the eastern areas, you will see this being implemented, as contained in our local development plans and master plan reviews," said Cllr Mguni.

He urged Bulawayo corporates and developers to take advantage of this investment opportunity as they will be prioritised in the implementation of the project. "It is only through these Private-Public-Partnerships that Bulawayo can take a rightful place on the national map, of being a leader in housing provision," he said. Businessman and Zimbabwe Building Contractors' Association chairman, Mr Obert Sibanda welcomed the development saying it will trigger economic growth for the city through value-chain.

"It's a very good development, the housing sector is a very important sector in an economy, it helps in the development of an economy because you get downstream benefits. This means that if there is a big housing project it will accommodate a lot of companies who supply materials including bricks, cement and other things. Knowing that construction is a labour-intensive industry, it means a lot of people would be employed. This will grow the city's and the national economy as citizens will have disposable income. The housing project can trigger economic growth more than most industries because when people have houses, they will also want to buy furniture those houses," said Mr Sibanda.

He also took note of the council's policy prioritising local companies in awarding of tenders saying if it is implemented it will increase the city's financial liquidity.

"The policy is good if they put it into practice but what we have observed the implementation becomes something else. But when you have such a programme and have requirements that will exclude local participation then you are doing a disservice to the local companies. What needs to be done is that when you have chosen to include local participation, entry levels and requirements on who should participate must also be friendly and accommodative to locals so that local companies can also participate in the development process," he said.

Source - chronicle