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DURBAN CBD will undergo a major regeneration with the development of the Rivertown precinct by leading urban regeneration company, Propertuity in conjunction with eThekwini municipality and a number of other collaborators.

The launch of the Rivertown development will take place on the weekend of 1-3 August with a weekly Sunday market, the Morning Trade at the 8 Morrison Street development. Anna Savage, owner of Durban’s I heart Market and former chef,will create the latest market sensation which is to take place weekly from 8am to 2pm. The launch will coincide with the international Union of Architects conference in Durban.

“The Morning Trade will focus on fresh, high quality artisinal foods and will provide a space for locals to buy groceries, top quality meats, farm fresh ingredients and delectable specialities,” said Savage. The launch will include an opening exhibition showcasing work of several Durban-based artists.

According to Propertuity CEO Jonathan Liebmann, eThekwini municipality approached him to discuss private sector investment and participation in the regeneration of Durban city. Liebmann approached a team of urbanists active in the area who will be responsible for providing multiple urban, architectural and cultural platforms that will set the regeneration of the area into motion.

“We want to create a neighbourhood that uplifts the area, while taking into account the fascinating existing essence of Durban,” he said.

Collaborators on the project include Durban-based designworkshop:sa architects (responsible for Durban’s Warwick Junction), local marketeers I heart Market and Marco Santoniccolo, owner of Spiga restaurant in Florida Road who has been appointed Operations director for Propertuity Durban.

Andrew Makin of designworkshop:sa said they were collaborating with Propertuity to design and deliver a number of mixed residential, hotel, commercial, cultural and retail projects in Rivertown.

“They will be the first evidence of the transformation of the Durban CBD into a diverse and super-liveable environment,” he said.

The Rivertown precinct is located between the Durban ICC and the beachfront. In addition to a rich existing cultural dynamic, its accessibility and scale and character of its historic light industrial and storage building stock and street network is ideal for regeneration into a vibrant mixed-use, mixed economy project. Its adjacency to Pixley Ka Seme (West) Street which is planned for transformation into a pedestrian dominated linear park and public transport connection through the centre of the CBD underlines these attributes.

The pioneering development at 8 Morrison Street is to be developed in three phases. The first is the launch of the weekly foodmarket and an exhibition space for arts and architecture inside the existing warehouse space.

The second phase will see the development of a commercial component with office spaces added on a mezzanine level inside the space. The third component is the construction of a new tower to include residential apartments and a hotel.

Propertuity will also develop two well-known art deco buildings in the Durban city centre. The redevelopment of these buildings will create 150 apartments priced from R350 000 for purchase.