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S African developer turns first sod for $44bn Jewel City


South Africa’s Divercity Urban Property Fund has turned the first sod for $44-billion Jewel City redevelopment project which has been closed to the public for decades, said a report.

Located in the eastern CBD of Johannesburg on Fox Street, once the heart of the diamond and precious metals trade in Johannesburg, the city stretches from Maboneng to Absa precincts.

On completion, the project will boast six city blocks, five of which have existing commercial buildings on them and construction of a new residential building of around 1,000 residential units, 20,000 sq m commercial space, 4,800 sq m retail space, 750 parking bays and pedestrianized Streets, to create a safe, green, energetic environment, reported Construction Review Online.

The revitalized Jewel City will reopen to the public as a vibrant mixed-use precinct, stated the report.

In addition to the 1,000 residential units, there will be an additional 1,800 DiverCity-owned units outside of the precinct, within a two km walking distance. This will lead to over 4,500 people staying in and around Jewel City, it said , citing Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba.

“This is a catalyst for igniting the city of Johannesburg. We are a city with a housing backlog of 300 000 and 160 000 of our people are looking for accommodation,” said Mashaba, while speaking at the launch ceremony.

Reconstruction will start at the end of January next year, with the first units available for rent by October and final completion of the precinct is expected by mid-2020, the report added.

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