job well done on iconic arch

All reports by Ramatsiyi Moholoa

All reports by Ramatsiyi Moholoa

The KwaZulu-Natal provincial government has commended construction workers at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban for spectacularly assembling the 3 500 ton arch at the new 70 000-seater sports complex.

The highest point of the arch, which has already started attracting local and international tourists, is 106m above the middle of the pitch and consists of 56 separate 10m pieces.

A high-tech cable car has been designed to take visitors to the highest point of the arch, where they have a clear view of the city and Indian Ocean.

KwaZulu-Natal Premier, Sbu Ndebele, said he had no doubt that the new R1,6 billion stadium, which will host 2010 World Cup group matches and a semifinal, ranks among the best sports facilities in the world.

"We are very excited about progress at the stadium. It will once more send out a loud and clear message that we in KwaZulu-Natal and the rest of South Africa are on track for the World Cup," he said.

"Our sport complex will be more like the ones in South Korea, where they also have museums. Our museum will tell people about the history of the Zulus and KwaZulu-Natal. The sport complex will not be a white elephant post-2010. We are working around the model of the Koreans.

"The museum will contain various historic materials on politics, sport and culture and we are also going to create a multimedia centre. The museum will also capture historic events such as the formation of African Wanderers as the first soccer club in 1906."

Ndebele praised all the people working on the projects related to the tournament.

"We are working hard to bring our people on board," he said. "We want something similar to the Barack Obama wave, with almost everybody in the world being excited that he is the new president of the United States."