I absolutely loved my jaunt around the Maboneng District when I was in Joburg recently, so to hear that the brains behind its rejuvenation – Jonathan Liebmann of Propertuity – is spearheading a similar revival in Durban is possibly the most exciting news I’ve heard in a long while.
Propertuity will be partnering with a host of Durban professionals for the transformation of one of our very own urban spaces into a thriving destination. What’s even more encouraging is that the full support of the eThekweni municipality is behind the project and together with local architects, artists and change-makers, the beginnings of RIVERTOWN DISTRICT will be launched with a development at 8 Morrison Street.
“We want to create a neighbourhood that uplifts the area, while taking into account the fascinating existing essence of Durban. Our intention is not to roll out a model of what has been done so far in Maboneng, but to rather look at this as an entirely new project that stays true to Propertuity’s core values and principles, driven by a new team of Durbanites”, says Propertuity developer Jonathan Liebmann.
Collaborators on the project include Durban based designworkshop:sa architects (the architects responsible for Durban’s Warwick Junction and the Constitution Hill urban precinct in Johannesburg) and local marketeers- ‘I heart Market’. Marco Santoniccolo, owner of the highly successful Spiga restaurant in Florida Road, has been appointed the Operations director for Propertuity Durban.
Andrew Makin of designworkshop:sa says “We are 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 an inspiringly diverse and super-liveable environment and the refocus on the global resurgence of urban life and its unbeatable economic, cultural and social benefits”.
The Rivertown Precinct is located between the Durban International Convention Center and the beachfront.
In addition to a rich existing cultural dynamic, its accessibility and scale and the 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. Existing sheds and structures that characterise the area will continue to define the street level precinct experience.
The pioneering development at 8 Morrison Street will be developed in 3 phases, the first of which is the launch of a weekly food market as well as an exhibition space for arts and architecture inside the existing 800sqm 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 will be the construction of a new tower that will include residential apartments and a hotel.
In addition to the redevelopment of this iconic property in Rivertown, Propertuity will be developing two famous art deco buildings in the Durban city centre. The redevelopment of these buildings will create 150 apartments priced from R 350 000 for purchase.
The first phase of the Rivertown development will launch on 3 August 2014 with a weekly Sunday market – The Morning Trade, at the 8 Morrison Street development.
Anna Savage, owner of Durban’s award winning ‘I heart Market’ and former professional chef has merged her skills of running markets with her knowledge and passion for good, honest food to create the latest market sensation, which will take place weekly from 8am – 2pm.
“The Morning Trade will focus mainly on fresh, high quality artisinal foods as well as providing a space for Durbanites to buy their groceries, top quality meats, farm fresh ingredients and delectable specialities”, says Savage.
The launch will also include an opening exhibition curated by Angela Shaw of Kwazulu- Natal Society of Arts, and showcasing the work of several Durban based artists. Permanent elements of the exhibition will include mural art and large scale sculptural and lighting installations, while elements such as urban photography, Mahala street print and video installation and surfing and skateboard installations will be on display for the duration of the UIA conference. Some of Durban’s most prolific artists will be exhibiting print work inside the space, and local furniture makers will also be given a platform to showcase their work within the exhibition. Music for the opening event will be provided by the popular Chairman Bar.
So – it’s ALL happening in the bin! Such exciting news and developments, I will keep you up-to-date as and when I receive more info!
You can visit the Propertuity website here