R12 million upgrades for Kouga beaches

OCTOBER 13, 2016

More than R12 million will be pumped into upgrading the Jeffreys Bay beachfront, including the town’s main beach which was last week once again awarded international Blue Flag status.

Kouga Local Municipality Executive Mayor, Elza van Lingen, said the municipality had received R 12.3 million through the Working for the Coast programme of the Department of Environmental Affairs.

A portion of the funding will be used to upgrade facilities at Jeffreys Bay’s Dolphin Beach, including the construction of a new life guard tower.

Dolphin Beach was awarded Blue Flag status once again last week for the period November 2016 to April 2017.

“The R12.3 million has been made available for coastal rehabilitation and clean-ups. We also plan on constructing a boardwalk and ablution facilities at Pellsrus Beach,” said the Mayor.

She said the town’s world-famous surfing sport Supertubes would also benefit from the allocation.

“We are looking at upgrading the boardwalks at Supertubes. Supertubes is the venue of the J-Bay Open of Surfing, which brings in tens of thousands of visitors to our shores every July. As the Council, we need to ensure that the venue can accommodate the ever-increasing number of people who visit Jeffreys Bay for this big event,” she added.

She said it was anticipated that 70 Kouga locals would receive employment through the project, which is being implemented by Tswella Trading on behalf of the Department of Environmental Affairs.

According to the business plan, the construction of the boardwalk and ablution facilities at Pellsrus Beach will cost about R3,25-million. Just more than R7-million will be put towards general coastal clean-ups and the construction of the new lifeguard tower at Dolphin Beach. A further R1,55-million will be used for the rehabilitation of about 15km of the coastline, including paving and alien plant removal.

Twenty recycled plastic bins and 15 recycled plastic benches will also be installed at a cost of just more than R300 000.

The project is set to run from November 2016 to April 2018.

Image: Joey Nel