N$100m shopping mall for Khorixas

A group of local investors, have plans undersway to construct a N$100m shopping mall, service station and an office complex in Khorixas, with constructions expected to start in May this year.

The invest, who prefers to remain anonymous, told The Villager that although the first phase of the construction has not kicked off yet, there are already local chains which have expressed interest to let space in the envisaged mall.

“Woermann Brock has taken up space as the anchor tenant. Dunns, Style, Ackermans and a pharmacy have also expressed interest”, he enthused, adding that Namcor has also shown interest to come on board.

“We have approached the local banks as well as other retailers, mobile phone operators and furniture shops to take up space, and we are waiting for official responses. With regard to office space, we are expecting Government and Stateowned enterprises to come on board in a bid to bring services closer to the people”, the investor noted.

Khorixas residents have to travel as far as Otjiwarongo or Opuwo to get access to basic services as the town now only has one supermarket. “We have read in the media that there is talk of the region being split up, which would make Khorixas the capital of Kunene South. That would be a boost for investors like us,” he said.

The town has a population of 10,000, excluding the surrounding towns of Sesfontein, Fransfontien and Kamanjab.

At least 150 jobs are estimated to be created during the construction of the mall which is expected to start early May, with at least 80 permanent jobs to be created for the inhabitants of the area. Khorixas residents and those of surrounding towns will no longer have to travel 200km to Otjiwarongo for their shopping.

This development is aimed at cutting out the costs of travelling as well as the risk of accidents. "For years, Khorixas has not seen any development, and it is time we are doing something for the people. The residents and people from neighbouring towns will now have a variety of shops at their doorstep. Young people don’t want to stay in Khorixas as there are no opportunities, and this has to change’’, the investor added.

Although the construction of a mall and a service station in Khorixas could mean job opportunities for the locals, the Khorixas Town Council’s Chief Executive Officer Nicodemus Gaeseb said he cannot comment on whether this development would have a positive impact on the residents of Khorixas as construction has not started yet.

A highway connection to the coastal towns of Henties Bay, Swakopmund and Walvis Bay is already underway, and is expected to increase the traffic through the town exponentially.