Newtown Junction adds to Joburg shoppers’ choice

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An artist’s impression of part of the R1.3 billion Newtown Junction mixed-use development in the Johannesburg CBD. An artist’s impression of part of the R1.3 billion Newtown Junction mixed-use development in the Johannesburg CBD.

The shopping scene in Johannesburg CBD is in for a commercial transformation, when Attacq Limited and Atterbury Property Holdings’ groundbreaking R1.3 billion Newtown Junction mixed-use development opens this Thursday.

Over the past few years, Johannesburg inner city has gradually changed from a grimy, unsafe place filled with dilapidated buildings to one that is drawing business and residents back.

As part of an urban regeneration effort with the Johannesburg city council, Newtown Junction marks a major milestone in one of the biggest private sector led commercial property developments in the inner city which is slowly being revived.

The 85000m² development includes a 38000m² shopping centre, some 39000m² of prime office space, a gym and basement parking for 2400 cars.

The project in the heart of historic Newtown precinct and flanked by the Market Theatre and right next to the M1 Motorway, has strong support from the Joburg Property Company (JPC).

The Junction will also include a 148-room City Lodge hotel that will span 8,000m². Hotel construction began this month and should be completed at the end of 2015.

A major part of the office component has been taken up by Nedbank for its Newtown Campus, which is nearing completion and on track to achieve a 4 Green Star SA rating from the Green Building Council of South Africa.

Shopping centre tenants include Pick n Pay, Ster-Kinekor, Truworths, the Foschini Group, Mr Price, Busboys & Poets, Life Grand Cafe and Shoprite amongst others. The gym will be operated by Planet Fitness.

Construction commenced in October 2012, and despite the recent construction industry strikes that caused delays, James Ehlers, Managing Director of Atterbury Property Developments, says the development is on track to open on this friday.

“This project was originally meant to be just a shopping centre development, but it changed at the onset into a groundbreaking mixed-use development in partnership with the city and the South African Heritage Resources Agency,” Ehlers adds.

The developers were conscious of the rich heritage value of the site, and with the support of the South African Heritage Resources Agency, have retained some of the old structures. For example, the 100 year old “Potato Shed” structure was taken off site when Newtown Junction’s multi-level basement was being constructed and the sheds were placed back in the exact position.

“Although not confirmed, it is believed that Newtown Junction is the biggest private development in the Johannesburg CBD since the Carlton Centre was constructed in the 70’s. The Johannesburg city council being the owner of the land has played a big role in this development, ensuring that it is completed successfully and that the economic targets of the City are met during the process,” says Morne Wilken, CEO of Attacq.

Newtown Junction’s development has to date created around 2700 jobs during construction alone, of which 850 were jobs for local unemployed people. During the operational phase it is estimated that there will be around 4800 people working in Newtown Junction.

Attacq and Atterbury Property Developments (APD) each own half of the development.


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