Commercial Property - May 2021 Edition

Page 22

MIXED-USE DE V EL OPMEN T Capital Park, a commercial park located within Steyn City, offers beautiful AAA-grade premises within a green and conducive environment.


GARETH GRIFFITHS talks to the professionals and discovers that work-home connection, location, social inclusion, investment and growth are all part of mixed-use development


ixed-use precincts are a logical approach to densification and a way to address urbanisation problems, says Landseer Collen, the director and founder of BPAS Architects. Collen’s firm has been intimately involved in the design of several mixed-use precinct developments in the Cape and East Africa. “We recently designed a mixed-use co-living development in Cape Town’s Northern Suburbs and are currently busy with a large-scale precinct in Kenya, which will blend residential, commercial, retail and hospitality offerings. “From a sustainability point of view, the provision of co-workspace can reduce a company’s carbon footprint due to the need for less property space and less commuting by employees. “More opportunity for interaction is offered and this establishes neighbourliness and a sense of ownership within a community. Other factors to consider include safety and security, scale and walkability, convenience, connectivity, and health benefits,” he says. However, Collen believes that consideration needs to be given to the integration of the living space occupant with the immediate


and surrounding environment. A mixed-use development should not stand on its own, as it loses the principle of activated space and therefore is no longer a “democratic environment”. “The mixed-use development should form part of a larger precinct and urban framework so that the ‘island’ approach is at least incorporated within a larger framework planning, thereby allowing a more inclusive development. “As architects, we are also broadening our knowledge of mixed-use precincts and hybrid hospitality and, currently, we are researching ‘tools’ such as parametric building configurators, augmented reality (AR) and others to enhance our value-add on such projects,” he concludes. Lambert Bezuidenhout, sales manager at Steyn City, a mega residential development north of Fourways, Johannesburg, confirms that long before the pandemic, Steyn City had created “a hub that offered every service you could possibly yearn for, negating the need to leave the parkland residence. “This hub consists of homes to suit all needs, the Steyn City School, a forward-focused educational facility accommodating learners

from Grade 000 to 12 and world-class offices that present the option of walking to the office from home,” explains Bezuidenhout. “With these facilities on site, the commute becomes a thing of the past. Steyn City’s iconic 2 000-acre parkland means that residents step out of the office and into nature to take a break. Then there are a host of recreational amenities minutes from the doorstep, including kilometres of well-lit promenade for walking or jogging; a 55km MTB trail; outdoor yoga stations; children’s play nodes; a gym fitted with the latest equipment; an indoor aquatic centre; resort pools; a choice of restaurants; an equestrian centre, and an 18-hole Nicklaus-designed golf course with award-winning clubhouse.” The Steyn City development has caught the attention of the global market also. As an award-winning luxury residential and mixed-use development, it was ranked the leading lifestyle estate in Gauteng, according to New World Wealth. Meanwhile, another significant mixed-use property development, Oxford Parks, is an extension of Rosebank, north of Johannesburg, reporting healthy growth in demand, comments property manager, Jennifer Hepburn-Brown. “The first phase of Oxford Parks consists of four completed office buildings with ancillary retail on the ground floor and a Radisson hotel to be completed in June 2021. Phase two commenced early in 2021 with the construction of a 6-star-rated green office building of approximately 7 600m2 for one of South Africa’s blue-chip companies, and will further include residential developments and offices. “Although the current property market is depressed, we have seen healthy demand in the Oxford Parks precinct, which may well result in the third phase commencing shortly,” Hepburn-Brown adds.



Oxford Parks is a 300 000 m2 mixed-use precinct comprising 200 000 m2 commercial space (including ancillary retail) and 100 000 m2 residential space.


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