On 19 March 2014, Baywest Mall developers Abacus Asset Management and Billion Group began the one year countdown until the doors of the Eastern Cape’s largest mall open to the public on March 19 next year.
Celebrating the launch of the countdown on Algoa FM, Baywest MD Gavin Blows said everything was on track for the super regional mall to welcome visitors from March 2015. “We are very excited,” said Blows. “The roof of the mall is busy going up and will be completed by July. After that we start on the interior of the mall.”
Work on major tenants Woolworths, Pick n Pay, Checkers and Game – which together represent 30,000m² of the 87,000m² mall – would start first. Blows said the bigger stores meant Baywest Mall shoppers would be exposed to the same sorts of extensive catalogues previously reserved for shoppers at Johannesburg‘s Sandton City, Cape Town‘s Canal Walk or Durban‘s Gateway shopping centres.
Research has shown that shoppers will travel for up to two hours to spend a day at the mall, meaning footprint stretching inland past Grahamstown and to Plettenberg Bay along the coast, said Blows.
The mall will also house the region’s only ice rink, which will be located in the Baywest Mall Fun Factory alongside state-of-the-art Ster Kinekor cinemas, a bowling alley, and a games arcade, among others.
Blows also reiterated the convenience of the mall’s location – along the N2 freeway in the city’s western suburbs – saying it took just 14 minutes to drive to site from the Humewood Fire Station, along the freeway.
The drive time is something which Algoa FM deejay Charlton Tobias tested last week, driving from the station’s Boardwalk headquarters to the site where he inspected progress of the development and even climbed one of the construction cranes after a thorough site safety induction. The result of his driving test was uploaded to YouTube.
During the Daron Mann Breakfast Show, Algoa FM listeners Abigail Hiscock, Greg Geldenhuys and Leigh Ann Minderon each won R2,000 for correctly answering questions pertaining to the mall.
Blows said work on site would escalate rapidly towards mid-year, with an estimated 1,500 workers set to be on site come June/July, increasing to between 2,000 and 2,500 early next year as developers add finishing touches to the mall. At the same time, the mall’s 250 tenants will be feverishly working to complete fitting their outlets, said Blows.
Meanwhile, work on the R300-million new road network in the area was progressing well, said Blows. Basil Read, which has been awarded the tender for developing a road network around the mall by the SA National Roads Agency Ltd (SANRAL), is building an offramp from the N2 freeway to the mall and also connecting Walker Drive in Sherwood with Old Cape Road in Rowallan Park – the start of the long awaited Redhouse-Chelsea arterial road.
Come October, work on the final stages of the mall will be underway. The landscaping is scheduled to start by the end of that month, while the 250 shops will begin being by December. The mall will boast about 3.5km of shop fronts and a mammoth 35km of electrical cabling.
“Baywest is more than just the mall,” said Blows. “It is going to change the face of the region. In 10 years Baywest City will rival the likes of Century City in Cape Town and Sandton City in Johannesburg,” he said.
“The first phase will cover about 35% of the total developable land with the super regional mall being the trigger for this component. The Baywest Mall will open with approximately 87,500m² of lettable area and is expected to expand to 110,000m² over the next 10 to 15 years,” he said.
The first phase will also house 100,000m² of office and commercial tenants and about 2,000 housing opportunities. A private School and hospital are also planned, Blows said.
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Article source: http://mype.co.za/new/2014/03/the-big-countdown-begins/