Although traders at the Grand Parade are still settling in to their newly-upgraded spaces, most of them seem to be happy with the progress of the site.
Mayor Dan Plato and mayoral committee member for assets and facilities management, James Vos, visited the Grand Parade on Tuesday August 21 to check the progress of the kiosk upgrade.
According to a press release from the City of Cape Town, the upgrade cost more than
R5 million and was done to ensure that the Grand Parade became a hive of activity for locals and visitors to the city.
During an inspection last year, the City said it was found that the kiosk buildings did not meet the necessary safety standards and fire regulations.
The buildings either needed to be demolished or refurbished to the required standard.
Traders also complained about loitering and unsanitary conditions that they have to trade in among other issues.
The traders had to leave the premises for six months to accommodate the upgrades.
Mr Vos said the aim of the upgrade was to give the space a welcoming feel.
“The Grand Parade was uniquely Cape Town. This is the culture and cuisine of Cape Town. The parade is a melting pot of cultures, and it was important for us to give traders a dignified space to do business from.”
He said the upgrade of the kiosks was part of a bigger plan for the City Hall Precinct.
He said there were plans to include a visitors’ centre and an event space.
“The parade is already an event space, so we want to create a connection, so that visitors can experience the space.”
As part of the upgrade the row of small kiosks facing the parade was demolished and those closest to Plein Street refurbished.
The space at the back of the existing kiosk was converted to accommodate the traders.
Above the kiosks, a dedicated law enforcement events and venue operations centre was built, where about 40 law enforcement officers will be based.