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The KwaMasinenge Slums Clearance project needed to be understood in the broad context of Millennium Development Goals which set the year 2014 as a target line to reduce poverty levels by half and clearing slums areas in the same timelines. In some quarters, this led to an adoption of a slogan ‘Cities without Slums’. The use of word ‘Slums’ and its original programme of Slums Clearance, graduated to be now commonly known as Upgrade of Informal Settlements.

Hibiscus Coast Municipality identified three areas which were to be attended in terms of this programme and thus contributing to this universal Developmental Agenda to better life for all.

These areas were:

  1. Mkholombe Slums Area

  2. Louisiana Slums Area

  3. KwaMasinenge Slums Area

Firstly, the Municipality started to contribute by successfully implementing the Mkholombe (Bhobhoyi Phase 1 – 697 residential sites) project on the South West of its Administrative Capital – Port Shepstone. All these houses are now connected individually to the Electricity grid, water and waterborne sanitation. Administrative processes are currently underway to effect transfer of these individual sites to the qualifying occupants and thus giving them a secured form of tenure.

Hibiscus Coast Municipality further recorded its success by constructing 504 houses in Louisiana and earned its accolade in the form of a prestigious Govan Mbeki Awards – Best Slums Clearance Project (3rd position). It is further recorded herein that a further sixty five (65) additional houses are currently under construction on this project, while the administrative processes to secure additional land for the excess informal dwellers are currently underway. It needed to be recorded herein that the Municipality has since installed two high masts (public lighting) in order to make the area safe and convenient place to live in at night. Individual electricity connections are currently being evaluated as the public tender closed in mid-August 2013 for all existing houses within the project.

KwaMasinenge housing project is therefore a special project as it will be the first project within the context of the ‘Eradication of Informal Settlements Programme’ to introduce multiple storey buildings. The house product will comprises of a single stand-alone 40m2 and multiple storey building ranging from two to twelve units. While each individual qualifying beneficiary will be awarded a secured form of tenure for their exclusive areas, but the project further endorses the concept of communal living. While the technical details of these multiple storey buildings focussed on structural soundness and engineering ingenuity, however, much attention was also given to the aesthetical pleasing features to ensure that they blend nicely with the surrounding environment of the golf course and well established middle to higher income residentia

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