Bulawayo mall hangs in the balance

BULAWAYO - The much-vaunted Bulawayo City Council project where popular Basch Street Terminus is supposed to be upgraded into a regional public transport hub hangs in the balance as the South African contractor, who won the tender, is yet to sign the contract.

A civil engineering company Tearracotta (Pvt) Ltd won the tender ahead of two other local companies to upgrade the terminus popularly known as Egodini.

It was supposed to have put pen to paper by end of December last year.

As a result, the council had reportedly issued vendors and commuter omnibus operators notices to vacate the terminus by the beginning of this month to pave way for the construction process.

Speaking to the Daily News recently, Bulawayo Mayor Martin Moyo said BCC was still waiting for the company’s response.

“We are still waiting for their response and we have given them time to respond. Initially, the project was supposed to start on the first of January but by that date, they had not signed the contract, so we are still waiting to hear from them,” Moyo said.

“I am saying we will wait for them but we will not wait indefinitely.

“Should the worst comes to the worst or if they are no longer interested we might need to reconsider, go back and decide a way forward,” he added.

The mayor however, could not be drawn into revealing when the award is likely to be terminated preferring to say the council is going to sit down and discuss the way forward.

He said they are still trying to get hold of the company to ascertain its actual position regarding the multi-million dollar project.

“We are still hopeful they are going to come, because, for Bulawayo — that will be a great development,” Moyo said.

The project, which also involves construction of a shopping complex at the site, is expected to cost $59 million.

When the council announced the development last year, it was received with mixed feelings, particularly by commuter operators and vendors who operate in the area.

Moyo said there was no reason for people who are going to be affected to be worried as the council has already identified suitable sites where they will be transferred to.

“Remember the reason why vendors are operating from Egodini is because of the high volume of people who use the terminus.

“So, naturally, if the commuter omnibus operators are moved from that place the vendors will be forced to follow them to where ever they will be operating from,” he said.

Comments (1)

Put it back on tender. Bulawayo can not wait to move forward. If tender was above board i see no problem.

H.Z Ngwenya - 4 February 2014

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