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WHEN South Africa won the bid to host the 2010 World Cup on May 15 2004, many communities were assured they would benefit through the legacyprojects.
It sounded then like a pipe dream, but the projects are there for everyone to see. In fact, most of the municipalities have started showcasing them.
The legacy projects were introduced by Fifa's local organising committee to ensure that there would be soccer facilities and other projects to be used by the communities post 2010.
Companies, national and provincial governments, municipalities, Fifa and the private sector came on board to help finance some of the projects.
The rebuilding of Orlando Stadium from scratch is one of the legacy projects. The stadium will also serve as a training venue for the Confederations Cup and 2010 World Cup.
Other venues include HM Pitje Stadium in Mamelodi and Super Stadium in Atteridgeville, Seshego Stadium in Limpopo and Cedric Xulu Stadium in Pieter-maritzburg.
In line with South Africa's promise that the 2010 World Cup will be an African event, Fifa, the organising committee and the government are working closely to spread the projects throughout the continent.
As part of the legacy projects, the PSL has been having a series of meetings with premier leagues in countries such as Nigeria, Botswana and Kenya to help them establish professionally run structures.
This includes how to get the best sponsorship deals, television and marketing rights, branding, administration, human resources and finance.
This is also aimed at helping the African premier leagues get sponsorship to reduce the massive exodus of the best players to Europe and other continents.
As part of Sepp Blatter's Goal project, Fifa is replacing the grass with artificial pitches in various African countries.
Irvin Khoza, the LOC chairperson, said: "We are quite pleased that most of the legacy projects are there for people to see and communities to use long before the start of the World Cup.
"Anybody walking in South Africa can see that most of our roads are being upgraded. Our hospitals and clinics are also being upgraded, some of them will also be used during the Confederations Cup and 2010 World Cup.
"We also have hotels being upgraded and more new ones built to cope with more than 500000 people coming to South Africa in 2010.
First National Bank and the National Lottery Distribution Fund are helping to finance the construction of soccer fields for communities. The bank is constructing artificial soccer pitches, while Lotto has joined forces with the organising committee to build 27 soccer fields to the tune of R81million.
Greg Fredericks, LOC legacy programmes acting head, said three artificial pitches would be built in each of the nine provinces at a cost ofR3million each.
In Johannesburg the municipality is spending R6million to green Soweto and surrounding townships. Mayor Amos Masondo said the plan was to counter the historicalimbalance.
The rehabilitation of the Klipspruit catchment area in Soweto is another project. Work is being done to clean up the river banks, remove rubble, said head of the city's 2010 office, Sibongile Mazibuko.
South Africa will certainly never be the same after the 2010 World Cup.