A groundbreaking plan to uplift the aesthetic value of the popular Embizweni Square in New Brighton has been mooted by the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality during a meeting with local businesses as part of unlocking economic opportunities in the area.
The area is a popular business and entertainment hub which offers an array of businesses that play a major role in the growth of local economy. Its popularity has seen green shoots emerging as new and trendy businesses are mushrooming in the area, a sign of investor confidence in the township economy.
The meeting is one of many engagements the Municipality will have with the affected businesses to strategise around how best the area can be improved through the value add in terms infrastructure development and diverse service offering.
One of the challenges that have been noted is the need for an immediate intervention in the monitoring of alcohol abuse by minors and rampant crime, both of which will be addressed through the deployment of law enforcement teams.
This will form part of ridding the area of bad elements and rebranding it as a tourist hub for both local and international visitors. Last week, the Safety and Security Directorate visited the area to establish what security challenges are plaguing the area and how those can best be addressed.
A meeting with the liquor board was initiated to bring them on board and to understand what role they can play.
As a start, the Municipality will start fixing street lights in the area including iconic areas like the Red Location Museum, the Mendi Arts Centre which has gone through a multi-million revamp and many others as they are closely linked to Embizweni Square.
Next will be the installation of security cameras in the square as a crime deterrent and this will be complemented with random patrols by law enforcement teams to ensure safety of the area. This will ensure businesses operate optimally without having to deal with criminal elements.
Another area needing urgent attention is the painting of parking lines to control the traffic as part of formalising the precinct as a recognised business hub.