Durban-Free State-Gauteng Development Corridor
The New Growth Path sets a goal of 5 million new jobs by 2020; identifies structural problems in the economy to be overcome and points to opportunities in specific sectors and markets (“jobs drivers”). The first job driver is infrastructure as this lays the basis for higher growth, inclusivity and job creation.The Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission was established by Cabinet to integrate and coordinate the country’s long-term infrastructure build as set out in the Infrastructure Plan. Infrastructure gaps were assessed through spatial mapping which analysed future population growth, projected economic growth and areas of the country which are not served with water, electricity, roads, sanitation and communication. Based on this work, seventeen Strategic Integrated Projects (SIPs) have been developed and approved to support economic development and address service delivery in the poorest provinces. Each SIP comprise of a large number of specific infrastructure components and programmes
SIP 2: Durban-Free State–Gauteng Logistics and Industrial Corridor
The second Strategic Integrated Project identified is the Durban-Free State-Gauteng Logistics and Industrial Corridor. The SIP aims to;
- Strengthen the logistics and transport corridor between SA’s main industrial hubs;
- Improve access to Durban’s export and import facilities;
- Raise efficiency along the corridor and integrate the Free State Industrial Strategy activities into the corridor; and
- Integrate the currently disconnected industrial and logistics activities as well as marginalised rural production centres surrounding the corridor that are currently isolated from the main logistics system.
Projects in the Durban-Free State-Gauteng Corridor
Projects that are in this Corridor include;
- Sale of the Durban International Airport to TRANSNET for the establishment of a dig-out port;
- Development of Cato Ridge as a dry port;
- Planned extension of commuter rail to reach Pietermaritzburg;
- The development of Harrismith (Free State) as a logistics hub; and
- Gauteng Logistics Hubs including, Tambo-Springs, Central Rand and improvement of City Deep.
Harrismith Logistics Hub
The road between Durban and Johannesburg is the busiest long-haul freight-transport corridor in the country and the Harrismith Highway Junction is the southern hemisphere’s biggest truck stop. The intention is to create an inland port that can handle cargo containers and shift cargo from road to rail, thus reducing congestion and costs. The volume of cargo passing through Harrismith is estimated to increase by 25% per annum for the next seven years. A feasibility study and scoping report have been completed.The Free State Development Corporation is managing the implementation of its capital development projects in Harrismith, including;
- Vehicle Distribution Centre
- Distribution Centre
- Food Processing Park
These projects are located in the Tshiame Industrial Estate, owned and managed by the Free State Development Corporation.