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Feb 15, 2008

Management system mitigates skills shortage challenges

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Construction|Engineering|Port|Africa|Civils|Consulting|Design|Housing|Industrial|Installation|Instrumentation|PROJECT|Projects|Roads|System|Waste|Waste Management|Water|Africa|Logistics|Service|Services|Infrastructure|Waste|Water|Operations
Construction|Engineering|Port|Africa|Civils|Consulting|Design|Housing|Industrial|Installation|Instrumentation|PROJECT|Projects|Roads|System|Waste|Waste Management|Water|Africa|Logistics|Service|Services|Infrastructure|Waste|Water|Operations
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Consulting engineering company Stemele Bosch Africa (SBA) has adopted a quality management system to deal with the skills-shortages problem in the construction industry and to provide quality engineering services to its clients, reports SBA national operations director Sid Turner.

“The skills-shortage challenge in the construction industry is concurrent with the economic boom, and we believe that a structured approach to quality management is imperative for any professional service provider. The company’s quality management system has been central to SBA’s sustained growth of nearly 30% a year over the last six years,” says Turner.

The company has provided the civil engineering services for water, sewage, and waste management needs for millions of people in rural and urban areas, and also has a significant roads capability up to national roads level, reports Turner.

He says that SBA is currently involved in the provision of essential engineering services for a number of residential developments throughout the country, including low-cost housing and industrial development projects.

CONSTRUCTION EXTENDS TO PE AND EAST LONDON

SBA’s offices in Port Elizabeth are currently involved in prestigious projects that include civil, structural, mechanical, and electrical engineering at the Nelson Mandela Bay Logistics Park, in Port Elizabeth, where the Coega Development Corporation (CDC) is increasing warehousing and production facilities in the Coega Industrial Development Zone.

The company has also been appointed to design bulk and internal services for the new Royal Palm Estates development in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN).

The brief includes all the water and irrigation reticulation planning, sewer outfall mains, internal ser- vices and earthworks.

Another significant project, which has a stong effect on developments on the North Coast of KZN, involves the civils, mechanical, electrical and instrumentation for the new Shef-field wastewater treatment works, near Ballito, in KZN.

In East London, the Buffalo City municipality has appointed SBA’s local operation to plan, design, and call for tender applications for the construction of the necessary sewerage infrastructure of the Mdantsane Bufferstrip housing development, reports the company.

Another important project for SBA in the East London area is the construction of the Mbashe North water supply scheme.

The first phase of this project, which involves the construction of the water treatment works on the banks of the Mgwali river, is nearing completion.

“This facility will initially treat 3,8 Mℓ/d and is expected to ulti- mately treat 7,6 Mℓ/d, supply- ing potable water to some 35 000 people,” says SBA East London director André Naudé.

“Local communities are benefiting from this project, which is providing desperately needed employment in the area.

New skills are being learned and transferred to the community. It is expected that in the 15-month construction period, at least 5 000 day jobs will have been created. This financial injection will impact positively on households in this poverty-stricken area,” says Naudé.

MUNICIPAL INFRASTRUCTURE AND PUBLIC WORKS
SBA is also providing civil and electrical engineering services for government’s current clinic revamping programme that will ensure communities in the former Transkei have access to healthcare facilities.

The company is also playing an important role in a new town centre development project in Durban, called Bridge City, which is a joint venture between Tongaat Hulett Developments and the eThekwini municipality.

This new destination, which targets the Inanda, Phoenix, KwaMashu, and Ntuzuma resi- dential areas, is gathering momentum, with Phase 1 of the civil contract nearing completion, reports SBA.

The Bridge City new town centre will include a subterranean metrorail station with associated intermodal transfer facilities, as well as a 40 000-m2 shopping centre, a 450-bed hospital, a regional magistrates court, as well as residential apartments.

SBA is currently overseeing the completion of the Phase 1 infrastructure contract, which covers the main spine routes through the development, the remodelling of the earthworks platforms, and the installation of services to the initial stages of the development.

The R40-million Phase 1 contract is expected to be completed early in 2008, reports the company.

Edited by: Laura Tyrer
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