The rebuild of Greater Edendale Mall has begun.
One of six Exemplar assets affected by the July 2021 riots, the mall is located in Plessislaer in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu Natal.
The 32 000sqm Mall would have celebrated its ten-year birthday in November of 2021 but was completely gutted in the week of unrest that took place in July.
Site establishment and demolition works began in the first week of February and are expected to take approximately 8 weeks, whereafter contractors will be appointed to commence construction.
Completion of the rebuild is expected to take approximately 18 months. The regional mall will be rebuilt with the continued goal of essential and convenient retail in mind.
Aesthetically, the latest trends will be incorporated into the layout, lighting and tenant mix. Natural lighting, full height glass shop fronts and high ceilings will all contribute to a feeling of spacious comfort for customers to shop. Rooftop PV systems and efficient utility management will also be core to the development.
CEO of Exemplar, Jason McCormick, is excited to bring retail back to the community.
“The damage to the mall and the impact it had on the micro-economy of the community was devastating to witness. The riots had a disastrous impact on small businesses. Many of our local tenants have closed and won’t be reopening their doors. But this has provided us with the unexpected opportunity of finding new talent while providing a refreshed tenant mix that speaks directly to the immediate needs of the community.”
Exemplar’s assets in KZN were extensively impacted in the riots. Greater Edendale Mall, Mandeni Mall and Theku Plaza all suffered structural and fire damage. Both Mandeni Mall and Theku Plaza were repaired and trading by December of last year.
“Despite the riots and their subsequent impact, we will continue to do all that we can to put our communities first and ensure the positive development of their day to day living experience. Now, more than ever, we need to continue to drive community upliftment and employment while ensuring real and tangible change for good.”