Development At Tambo Springs Logistics Gateway On Track

Development At Tambo Springs Logistics Gateway On Track
Tumi Mohulatsi, CEO of Tambo Springs Development Company (TSDC). Photograph by Halden Krog

Infrastructure development continues at the Tambo Springs Logistics Gateway despite Transnet’s inability to deliver on the construction of a rail terminal in the agreed time.

As a logistics gateway, Tambo Springs will offer road and rail-intermodal solutions, truck-related logistics functions, manufacturing and processing centres, industrial production and warehousing areas all linked to existing transport corridors. When completed, it will be the largest development of its kind in Sub Saharan Africa doubling current freight logistics capacity in and out of Gauteng. It will also have customs clearance and the benefits of a special economic zone.

In June last year state-owned freight logistics utility Transnet announced a multibillion-rand concession to construct an intermodal rail terminal as part of the broader logistics gateway development, to Southern Palace Joint Venture Consortium. The 20-year concession would see the consortium design, build, finance, operate and maintain a rail terminal within the logistics gateway. This particular concession process has, however, failed.

Tambo Springs Development Company (TSDC), the landowner and master developer of the overall project, is now pursuing its rights as the developer and owner of the terminal site to ensure the terminal and private rail sidings proceed despite the delays. The intermodal rail terminal remains a key focus as the new terminal strategy unfolds.

According to Tumi Mohulatsi, CEO OF TSDC, they welcome the opportunity to now work with Transnet on the alternative rail solution so that this project can deliver on the government’s road to rail strategy.

Tambo Springs is an approved Presidential SIP2 (Strategic Infrastructure Project) focused on strengthening the NATCOR corridor between Johannesburg and Durban, with a tripartite agreement in place between the Ekurhuleni Council, Gauteng Department of Roads & Transport and Transnet. The development forms part of key policy and strategy within National, Provincial and local government.

“The concession failure will have a short-term impact on the construction of the rail terminal in the precinct, but no impact on the development of the Tambo Springs multi-modal logistics gateway and its vision as a whole,” said Mohulatsi.

The City of Ekurhuleni is currently in the process of installing R300 million of bulk infrastructure on the site that is strategically located on the southern border of Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni. In addition, construction of the new N3 interchange and K148 road infrastructure by Gauteng Department of Roads and Transport (GDRT) will commence this year.

“At a crucial time when South Africa needs bankable infrastructure projects to go ahead, the government needs to fast track projects like Tambo Springs if they are to have a meaningful economic impact in the post-Covid-19 South Africa. Now more than ever Public/Private partnership developments, like this one, are needed to ensure we capture the attention of the global logistics and freight world, create jobs, a new tax base and foreign investment. It is estimated that 81 000 temporary jobs and 110 000 permanent jobs will be created over the life cycle of the project,” said Mohulatsi.

Once completed, the gateway will have easy access to major road and rail networks linking strategic seaports, OR Tambo International Airport and enabling industry will be linked in a Smart City environment with next-generation technology.

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