The eagerly awaited Luderitz Waterfront Development project phase two is shaping up despite encountering engineering challenges.
Bicon Namibia Structural Engineer, Michael Lorek who is involved with the Waterfront construction confirmed that progress for the project has been hampered by constant challenges.
The development is estimated to cost N$650m with the power station renovation and upgrade costing an additional N$230m.
“Every day we are always getting a call from the contractor that they discovered some new things that we need to adjust. During excavations we discovered some new tunnels under the power station, new bases, pipes, tanks amongst other objects. Therefore, the contractor keeps getting delays due to various surprises we keep discovering on the site.”
This multimillion dollar development project consist of the remodelling of the old power station, the construction of retail outlets, a new 72 room four star Waterfront Hotel, residential units and sea view shopping mall.
The Nexus Group was awarded the renovation and upgrading tender of the power station. The work on the old power station started last year July and is expected to complete in 26months.
Lorek adds that some of other structural challenges to overcome during the construction include the fact that the old power station which forms part of the new waterfront development was built in 1911 with no building plans; therefore with any new demolition, new structural surprises are always uncovered.
“Thus, the current conditions are always changing with the discoveries and need to be constantly updated.”
The development will see the existing envelop of the building being retained.
He said building will be based on a green and ecological concept.
“Certain factors to be implemented consist of a special isolation wall or passage system to reduce heat loss and optimise the building’s interior climate by reducing air conditioning usage. A grey water system is planned whereby the grey water will be recycled and reused in toilets, irrigation amongst others, there will be solar water heaters installed too to reduce energy usage,” she said.
Luderitz CEO, Aunue Gebhard last month emphasised that although Luderitz had endless opportunities within its town, the lack of proper infrastructural development and the long distance with other towns has been delaying its full blown development.
“Once the rehabilitation of the railway is completed, it will surely make access to Luderitz easier, we are then confident the town will be able to attract a number of investors which will eventually develop the town and flourish,” she said.
Phase one of the project was completed 7TLIPEthe harbour square, shops, restaurants and offices while the second phase has since 2009 encountered a number of obstacles including insufficient funds.