The city of Durban has wasted no time, effort or expense to ensure it is ready for the 2010 World Cup in June next year. The various projects are progressing full-steam ahead at an estimated cost of over R5 billion.
THE STADIUM: Taking its design inspiration from the South African flag, this impressive new structure on the Durban skyline is a world-class, state-of-the-art, multifunctional arena located in the heart of the Kings Park Sporting Precinct, seating 70,000 people. The retractable roof, that can cover around 80% of the stadium, means this venue can host events 365 days of the year. The stadium also incorporates Imbizo Place with over 7000m2 of retail space, an amphitheatre and a cable car up to the viewing platform on the arch, offering breathtaking views over the ocean and city.
KING SHAKA AIRPORT: A brand new airport in the North of the city at La Mercy will link Durban and the rest of the country/world.
The new airport will be able to handle larger aircraft, more people and will provide a direct international link to Durban.
INFRASTRUCTURE: There is also major work happening along freeways and highways, on the streets leading to the stadium
and the planting of trees in parks and in other public open spaces, all of which are being done with the tournament firmly in mind.
Another of the major projects that will radically change the face of Durban is the R100m upgrade of the Golden Mile (Durbanâ€™s famous beachfront). Not only will this area incorporate the FIFA Fan Park at New Beach, it will also house a “Fan Mile” where people can buy food or drink while watching the matches at one of the many cafes or restaurants that will be scattered around. This Fan Mile will run along the beach from the Fan Park to the stadium itself. Two public viewing areas will also be set up, where matches can be watched on a plethora of big-screen TVs.
This new facelift for the city, combined with other initiatives to improve safety and security overall – will leave Durban an even more beautiful, friendly and safe place.