Privately-owned property developer, the Amdec Group, broke ground at its 11 ha, R500-million affordable housing estate – Golden Grove Estate – in Ottery, Cape Town, on September 17.
Golden Grove Estate will house 1 000 affordable residential apartments – including 24 m2 one-bed units, 36 m2 two-bed units and 54 m2 three-bed units – on a rental basis.
The units are targeted at households with an employment history and a joint household income not exceeding R22 000 a month, with Amdec stating that rental costs will not exceed 30% of the tenant’s household income.
The estate will include a convenience retail centre and onsite laundry; communal gardens and children’s playground; creche, day care and after-care / supervised homework facilities; five-a-side soccer pitches and basketball courts; and a communal recreational clubhouse.
The estate will also include an on-site furniture workshop so that residents can build and / or assemble their own flat-pack furniture on-site.
At the sod-turning ceremony on September 17, attended by Cape Town executive Mayor Dan Plato, Amdec Group CEO James Wilson said the group was acutely aware of the need for affordable housing. “. . . our recent planning application in respect of Golden Grove Estate was approved. We intend launching this scheme to market within the next month or two, and being in the ground before the end of the year.”
Plato said that as the demand for housing in South African continued to grow, and the country’s capacity to deliver housing was unable to meet that demand, he was pleased to see the private sector playing its part and developing attractive affordable housing sites that also include a variety of attractive recreational spaces.
“I look forward to seeing the first of the 1 000 families move into their new homes in the near future.”
Meanwhile, the Amdec Group points out that it is not new to the housing sector, highlighting that, in 2007, it acquired 13 vacant office buildings in Doornfontein, Johannesburg, and redeveloped them to create a mixed-use precinct that provided affordable homes for 1 500 families (or about 6 000 people).
The primary building, a 26-floor residential tower, was set above a street level retail podium anchored by Shoprite, with the 12 adjoining buildings upgraded to include a city school, book and toy library, all-weather basketball courts and five-a-side football pitches, in addition to other communal facilities.
Wilson confirmed that the Amdec Group will use its skills and expertise, acquired over 31 years in business, to deliver an affordable housing estate that provides for the needs of the community. “Golden Grove Estate is exceptionally well-located within an established suburb, surrounded by residential homes and close to shops, schools and sports facilities, and transport nodes, making it easy to access on foot or by public and private transport.”
He adds that Golden Grove Estate will also deliver safety and security, convenience, amenities and energy efficiency.
Further, as a proudly South African company, Wilson says the Amdec Group is committed to redressing the injustices of the past.
“To this end, we have established a fully-fledged affordable housing division which is going to be responsible for building, owning, operating, and managing our affordable housing stock in perpetuity to ensure that housing is made available to those who need it most.”
In addition, he says the group is engaging with multiple industry experts in the fields of affordable, social, and subsistence housing, with a view to providing the thought leadership necessary to develop innovative solutions to the national housing crisis.
“We recognise that we cannot resolve all of our country’s economic inequalities, but we can work alongside local government and support their key strategic objectives, by introducing affordable housing developments and innovative self-build solutions to a market that is woefully under-supplied,” Wilson concluded.