BY SILAS NKALA
FBC Building Society is set to begin constructing over 700 houses in Hwange’s Empumalanga high-density suburb this year.
Town secretary Ndumiso Mdlalose said in 2018, Hwange Local Board (HLB) sold approximately 39 194,8 hectares to FBC Building Society for the construction of 764 houses and a block of residential flats in Empumalanga Phase 6.
He said the other portion of land was set aside for a school, commercial mall, a small to medium enterprises industrial site, church, two crèches and open land stands.
“FBC wanted to find out how far council has gone with regards to development of relevant offsite infrastructure as stated in the memorandum of understanding (MoU) we signed with them,” Mdlalose said.
The MoU states that council should develop a surfaced access road, water and sewage main pipelines as well as an access bridge from Empumalanga Phase 3 to Empumalanga Phase 6.
“Due to lack of funding, we suggested that we offset the projects we were supposed to carry out through offering them (FBC) construction material such as quarry and gravel for free. We also considered waiving building inspection fees as well as non-charging of rates for a stipulated period.”
Mdlalose said FBC officials acceded to the arrangement in principle, and also suggested compensation in the form of commercial land.
“We reached an agreement, whereby FBC Building Society is expected to construct a 1km access road as well as install a main water pipeline to the construction site using its own resources.”
HLB has committed to construct a main sewage trunk to service the new settlement, including Empumalanga Phase 4, while FBC pledged to fund community projects to be identified by the local authority as part of its corporate social responsibility.
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