13 September 2013
Phase 1A of the government’s multi-billion rand Cornubia development north of Durban was launched on Friday, with eThekwini mayor James Nxumalo announcing that 482 housing units were ready for occupation.
The units consist of two bedrooms, a lounge, a kitchen and ablution facilities – a far cry from the usual one-bedroom RDP starter homes.
Speaking to the media during a tour of the completed houses, Nxumalo said phase 1A had cost close to R100-million for the houses and related infrastructure.
He said phase 1B was due to begin before the end of this year. This phase will yield an additional 2 221 housing units at an additional cost of R500-million. The uptake on the business development had reached 80 percent, he said, and construction was under way.
Initially a joint venture between the eThekwini Metro Municipality and Tongaat Hulett, the Cornubia development has since been adopted by the Cabinet as a national priority project, bringing all spheres of government in as official partners in the development.
Cornubia is a mixed-use, mixed-income, 1 200-hectare development, with 80 hectares earmarked for industrial development and the rest for commercial, housing and other social and public facilities, including schools, creches, clinics, multi-purpose halls, police stations and post offices.
It is strategically located between Durban’s wealthier Mt Edgecombe and Umhlanga areas and disadvantaged areas north of the city such as Inanda, Ntuzuma, KwaMashu, Phoenix, Ottawa and Waterloo.
Situated some 15 kilometres south of the new King Shaka International Airport, Cornubia will see 23 000 new homes being built over the next 10 years, 15 000 for subsidised housing and the balance for a wide range of affordability levels.
“The first 250 people are already allocated houses,” Nxumalo said on Friday. “We expect all new owners to move in by November/December this year – depending on the finalisation of connecting the new housing units to the electrical grid and water reticulation system. We expect these to be completed by October.”
eThekwini head of human settlements and infrastructure, Nigel Gumede, said the city’s priority was to resettle people who were currently in transit camps.
However, he added: “We want the new owners to treat these housing units as their homes, not as an informal settlement. We will ensure that the right people are allocated houses and monitor compliance. Thereafter, no one is allowed to sublet or sell the housing unit, as it belongs to the government.”