green point to raise the roof

All reports Ramatsiyi Moholoa

All reports Ramatsiyi Moholoa

The roof of the new Green Point Stadium in Cape Town, a venue for the 2010 World Cup finals, will be delivered from Kuwait next month.

Peter Cronje, the city's World Cup communications director, said the construction of the roof will begin shortly after the arrival of the components.

Cronje said the first of the 72 columns set to support the state-of-the-art roof structure has reached its maximum height.

The roof is designed in such a way that noise will be reflected back into the stadium, which will come as a relief to a handful of community members who are against the construction of the facility. The new multipurpose 68000 seater stadium, which is built on the site of the old stadium, and its precinct will take up only 18 hectares.

This will leave the rest of the green space for the development of a centralized sports complex of playing and practice fields plus club facilities.

The design also provides for a public network and pedestrian walkways linking the Common with historic sites like Fort Wynyard and Atlantic seafront boulevard. As part of the 2010 World Cup legacy projects, the City of Cape Town wants to ensure that all community members have access to the facility.

Besides soccer, other sporting codes that will have access include athletics, rugby, cricket, bowling, golf and tennis.

The investment of R2,85 billion by all three spheres of government provides a cash injection to rejuvenate the Common.

The City of Cape Town has made a capital budget provision of R120 million for the redevelopment of Green Point Common.

At the same time, the city has also put aside R1,9billion to improve the city's transport infrastructure, including strategic transport corridors and routes. The rail system, long-distance public transport facilities and inner-city distribution system will also receive major upgrades.

In addition, the Airports Company of South Africa is spending R1,2 billion on upgrading Cape Town International Airport to cope with the steadily increasing amount of traffic and the anticipated visitors during the tournament itself.

Besides the first-round matches, Green Point will also host one of the semifinals.

Cronje told Sowetan that they were happy with the preparations for the World Cup, saying the process "was running smoothly".