http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 14.61Change: -0.05
R/$ = 10.58Change: -0.03
Au 1283.69 $/ozChange: 0.32
Pt 1405.00 $/ozChange: 2.00
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Nelson Mandela 1918 - 2013   Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science & Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Oct 14, 2011

Aerotropolis concept at the heart of Ekurhuleni’s new development thrust

Back
Ekurhuleni aerotropolis video.
Cape Town|DURBAN|Maputo|Natal|Ekurhuleni|Africa|Asia|Europe|South America|Egypt|India|Mozambique|South Africa|United States|Airport Cities World Conference|Cairo International Airport|Kenan Institute|King Shaka International Airport|OR Tambo International Airport|Port Of Durban|University Of North Carolina|Air Travel Intensive Executives|Airline|Basic Support Infrastructure|Daily Services|Energy|Information Technology College|Light-industrial And Time-critical Products|Transport|Transportation|John Kasarda|Kylie Hatton|Mondli Gungubele|Sibusiso Ndebele|Ekurhuleni|North Carolina|Middle East|Information Technology
cape-town|durban|maputo|natal|ekurhuleni-company|africa|asia|europe|south-america|egypt|india|mozambique|south-africa|united-states|airport-cities-world-conference|cairo-international-airport|kenan-institute|king-shaka-international-airport|or-tambo-international-airport-facility|port-of-durban|university-of-north-carolina-facility|air-travel-intensive-executives|airline|basic-support-infrastructure|daily-services|energy|information-technology-college|light-industrial-and-time-critical-products|transport-industry-term|transportation|john-kasarda|kylie-hatton|mondli-gungubele|sibusiso-ndebele|ekurhuleni|north-carolina|middle-east|information-technology
© Reuse this



Ekurhuleni executive mayor Mondli Gungubele’s aerotropolis plans seem to be taking flight with the start of a six-month process to develop a strategic roadmap for the Ekurhuleni Aerotropolis project, which will give rise to what he asserts will be Africa’s first so-called 'airport city'.

While investigating the appropriate economic growth path for the city, the Ekurhuleni municipality was exposed to the airport city economy concept and decided to adopt the aerotropolis strategy as its Growth and Development Strategy 2025.

“One-third of the value of international trade comprises goods that are transported by air and, over the next 18 years, the amount of air cargo is expected to triple,” says Gungubele, adding that the municipality aims to capitalise on these developments.

Further, he explains that Ekurhuleni is home to OR Tambo International Airport (ORTIA), which is in contact with the world’s best airline companies and, in terms of size, can only be contested in Africa by the Cairo International Airport, in Egypt.

Through a rail hub in Germiston, the city also connects South Africa and Africa through the Port of Durban, in KwaZulu-Natal, and the Maputo corridor, in Mozambique.

Ekurhuleni also provides interconnectivity through its freeways, such as the N3, R23, R24 and R21, while 1.5-billion kilometres of optic fibre worth R40-million is currently being installed to actualise services.

“Therefore, the basic support infrastructure required to exploit the opportunities of an airport city economy are already in place in Ekurhuleni. However, the existing infrastructure still requires reorientation,” explains Gungubele.

Tackling Choke Points
“A competitive sustainable aerotropolis will be achieved through careful planning principles, which involves the restructuring of the city. To improve economic efficiency and reduce congestion, some business and industry may have to be relocated,” explains the University of North Carolina’s Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise director Professor John Kasarda.

Residential communities also need to be designed to ensure that all the daily services are nearby to limit commuting over long distances, he says.

Kasarda, who is seen as the leading developer of the aerotropolis concept, is developing the Ekurhuleni aerotropolis roadmap, which includes guidelines for the development of infrastructure and facilities, a business plan and implementation strategy.

While overall highway connectivity is good, certain choke points still need to be tackled, with other modes of transportation, such as passenger and freight rail, also needing to be upgraded and synergised.

The municipality is currently in talks with provincial and national government to ensure that Transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele starts the analysis of the transport infrastructure challenges.

“We might have these developed freeways and a rail hub but are they organised in a manner that enables the airport city to fully exploit these resources?” asks Gungubele.

Ekurhuleni’s growth and development strategy, which is under review and should be completed by the end of this year, together with the aerotropolis roadmap, will also identify the city’s infrastructure needs, in terms of energy, water supply and sanitation.

He says once an aerotropolis strategy of this nature is adopted, interest is created worldwide. Already, a company from India is contemplating the construction of an electronic product factory in Ekurhuleni, as well as an information technology college.

The aerotropolis strategy will suit industries that produce light-industrial and time-critical products, as well as air travel intensive executives and professionals. Boosting tourism is also an important component of the strategy.

He adds that the municipality intends to transform Kempton Park into the cultural capital of Ekurhuleni – and even Gauteng, by establishing a convention centre, museum and theatre, which will help establish Ekurhuleni as a destination of choice.

Aerotropolis Jobs?
An aerotropolis economy creates many job opportunities, as it does not only have the potential to impact a 25 km radius, but a 60 km radius, thereby benefitting the whole of Gauteng.

“The majority of South Africans have been excluded from participating in the economy. Whatever approach we take must consider this factor. Programmes, such as Ekurhuleni’s Township Economy Strategy, have to be developed at a fast pace to provide opportunities for historically disadvantaged communities,” says Gungubele.

The aerotropolis strategy seeks to unleash the vibrancy of the townships by interacting with original entrepreneurs and connecting them with the main value chain along with export opportunities.

“There is no question that millions, which we do not have, will have to be spent to develop the aerotropolis economy. The key, however, is to devise a bankable strategy that involves the public-private sector. We have to create conditions that attract investment and funding of development,” notes Gungubele.

Kasarda says airports will shape business location and urban development in the twenty-first century as much as highways did in the twentieth century, railroads in the nineteenth and seaports in the eighteenth.

He says it could take decades for the full aerotropolis to evolve following this model, however, Ekurhuleni will have much to demonstrate when it hosts the Airport Cities World Conference and Exhibition from April 17 to 19, in 2013.

Kasarda states that Ekurhuleni is well suited to become an aerotropolis economy as it has a leading global hub airport at its centre, which is extensively connected to Asia, Europe, the Middle East, South America and parts of the US.

He was in Ekurhuleni last month to meet government officials and corporate representatives to present the aerotropolis concept, discuss the Ekurhuleni aerotropolis strategic roadmap, as well as the business opportunities presented by an airport city.

“Without the involvement of these stakeholders it would be impossible to develop an aerotropolis, which will enable Ekurhuleni’s business and industry to move towards high-value products that are efficiently shipped through the ORTIA.

The aerotropolis concept will provide Ekurhuleni with greater economic efficiency that will cut costs, increase productivity and expand market reach of businesses in the region.

Meanwhile, using the guidelines of the strategic framework to design the aerotropolis, instead of spontaneous development, will create an area that is also more environmentally and socially sustainable.

Challenges faced by the project include people who create roadblocks to hinder the implementation of the aerotropolis strategy, as they have misunderstood the model and its potential to impact people at all socioeconomic levels, especially those who are at lower levels.

Kasarda says some people also believe airports are damaging to the environment; however, aviation has less impact on the environment than other modes of transport, contributing only 2% to greenhouse gas emissions.

Beyond Ekurhuleni
Besides Ekurhuleni, Kasarda has visited Durban, in KwaZulu-Natal, which also has plans to develop an aerotropolis around the King Shaka International Airport (KSIA), which is north of the city.

“I was impressed with the long-term plan for development at the airport, such as the Dube Tradeport air logistics complex,” says Kasarda.

He adds that the development of an aerotropolis around the KSIA will be a greater challenge than that of Ekurhuleni, as the area does not have the local market size or the air connectivity. Therefore, it will have to develop the needed logistic systems and commercial facilities to grow its economy and aviation routes.

“Durban does have a solid plan that fits the aerotropolis model well, but it will likely take at least two decades for the evolution of a successful aerotropolis.”

However, Kasarda notes that the planners and landowners recognise that the Durban Aerotropolis development will be incremental and therefore have a realistic 20- to 40-year plan to foster aerotropolis development.

“Both the KSIA and the Dube Tradeport are first-class modern facilities that have good prospects to form the core of a Durban aerotropolis. Further, the airport has a vast amount of open land around it for future aviation-linked commercial development.”

Although Kasarda has not met leadership in Cape Town, he has seen the Cape Town International Airport, which is in a built-up area like ORTIA, but there are zones near the airport that are suited to development into logistics and distribution centres, following aerotropolis principals.

Meanwhile, the natural beauty of Cape Town will make it a powerful magnet for conventions and meetings. The basics are available in Cape Town, but Gauteng has the economic scale and global air connectivity that gives it certain advantages for aerotropolis development, therefore, things will happen a lot faster here.

“From what I could tell, leadership in Cape Town is just beginning to think about how the aerotropolis model can boost their municipality’s competitiveness and future commercial success.”

City of Cape Town media manager Kylie Hatton says the development of an aerotropolis economy is not something currently planned or envisioned for Cape Town.

“However, we are in the process of developing a long-term vision for Cape Town, which will guide the city in terms of the possible areas of development it would like to target.”

Meanwhile, the Ekurhuleni municipality has discussed the aerotropolis project with the Airports Company South Africa (Acsa), which is an essential part of the project’s success.

Acsa plans a 161% tariff hike over the next five years, but Gungubele believes these high tariff hikes will be mitigated through the development of the aerotropolis that will generate substantial revenue for ORTIA.

“Once the aerotropolis is operational, it will generate substantial additional revenue for Acsa, as investment on and around the airport will supersede higher tariffs by increasing the base from which Acsa derives its revenue.”

Acsa and ORTIA in particular, recognise the importance of this project from a growth and developmental point of view, says Acsa’s communications and brand manager at ORTIA Unathi Batyashe–Fillis.

“As a major hub airport on the African continent, OR Tambo International is at the epicentre of the aerotropolis and, therefore, a key component and driver of the concept. While discussions with Ekurhuleni and the provincial government are still in their formative stages, Acsa is aligned with the city’s growth path and recognises its existence as an aerocity in an aerotropolis.”

She says Acsa will continue to work closely with all stakeholders, particularly Ekurhuleni and the province, to implement an integrated set of strategies, policies and actions.

Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other News This Week News
The Electronic Systems Laboratory (ESL) of the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Stellenbosch University is strongly reaffirming its position as one of South Africa’s leading centres for satellite technology and expertise. It is currently...
MORE IN SA Phase 2 should see local content on the mainline locomotive increase from 65% to 80% by the end of 2014
The world’s lowest-cost diesel-electric locomotive is not made in China, but in Pretoria, at RRL Grindrod Locomotives’ newly upgraded 30 000 m2 plant. The company’s locomotive pricing is “more competitive than any other original-equipment manufacturer (OEM)...
The South African Defence Review 2012, released to the public at the end of last month (despite the year given in its title) recommends the creation of the post of Chief Defence Scientist. This official would be responsible for the management of defence technology...
More
 
 
Latest News
Updated 7 hours ago As industry prepares for the launch of South Africa’s digital terrestrial migration, the South African Communications Forum (SACF) hosted a workshop to determine the country’s readiness in terms of compliance of set-top boxes [STBs] and access to funding. The...
Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande
Updated 7 hours ago Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande has outlined plans for the development of a new health and allied sciences university into which the Medical University of Southern Africa (Medunsa) campus of the University of Limpopo, located in Ga-Rankuwa, will...
Communications Minister Yunus Carrim
Updated 7 hours ago The costs of communicating have to drop, Communications Minister Yunus Carrim said on Wednesday. "Clearly, the costs have to come down. It's not just in the interests of the poor and disadvantaged but the economy as a whole," Carrim said in a statement following a...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Steel 2014: A review of South Africa's steel sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Steel 2014 report provides an overview of the global steel industry and particularly of South Africa’s steel sector over the past year, including details of production and consumption, as well as the country's primary carbon steel and stainless...
Projects in Progress 2014 - First Edition (PDF Report)
This publication contains insight into progress at the delayed Medupi and Kusile coal-fired projects, in Mpumalanga and Limpopo respectively, as well as at the Ingula pumped-storage scheme, which is under construction on the border between the Free State and...
Automotive 2014: A review of South Africa's automotive sector (PDF Report)
The report provides insight into the business environment, the key participants in the sector, local construction demand, geographic diversification, competition within the sector, corporate activity, skills, safety, environmental considerations and the challenges...
Construction 2014: A review of South Africa's construction sector (PDF Report)
Construction data released during 2013 hints at a halt to the decline in the industry during the last few years, with some commentators averring that the industry could be poised for recovery. However, others have urged caution, noting that the prospects for a...
Electricity 2014: A Review of South Africa's Electricity Sector (PDF Report)
This report provides an overview of the state of electricity generation and transmission in South Africa and examines electricity planning, investment in generation capacity, electricity tariffs, the role of independent power producers and demand-focused initiatives,...
Defence 2013: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s 2013 Defence Report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key players in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the defence sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial...
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
The Electronic Systems Laboratory (ESL) of the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Stellenbosch University is strongly reaffirming its position as one of South Africa’s leading centres for satellite technology and expertise. It is currently...
MORE IN SA Phase 2 should see local content on the mainline locomotive increase from 65% to 80% by the end of 2014
The world’s lowest-cost diesel-electric locomotive is not made in China, but in Pretoria, at RRL Grindrod Locomotives’ newly upgraded 30 000 m2 plant. The company’s locomotive pricing is “more competitive than any other original-equipment manufacturer (OEM)...
The South African Defence Review 2012, released to the public at the end of last month (despite the year given in its title) recommends the creation of the post of Chief Defence Scientist. This official would be responsible for the management of defence technology...
AltX-listed engineering technology company Ansys has been awarded an R188-million contract by Transnet to supply integrated dashboard display systems to the freight rail utility’s locomotives. Black-owned and controlled Ansys developed the bespoke integrated system...
South Africa’s sole nuclear power station Koeberg, which is located in the Western Cape, breached a major operations milestone on April 4, which marked the thirtieth anniversary of Unit 1 having been connected to the grid. Eskom, which operates the two-unit plant,...
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks