Alberton's Palm Ridge Court Complete

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13 Aug 2012

The construction of a new Magistrates’ Court in Palm Ridge, near Alberton in Ekurhuleni Gauteng has been completed by contractor Liviero.

The new five-storey building houses 33 court rooms and replaces the smaller Magistrates’ Court in Alberton North that previously served the area.

The new five-storey building houses 33 court rooms and replaces the smaller Magistrates’ Court in Alberton North that previously served the area.

The old court building will close down and employees will be relocated to the new 18 000 square metre building in Palm Ridge.

The development includes one level of basement parking for staff, as well as an open air public car park.

High-tech security features, including biometric access control, place the new court building leaps ahead of its predecessor.

Liviero chief executive officer Neil Cloete says members of the public could move about quite freely in the old court house.

“This new building has been designed with secure, private areas for the Magistrates, with fingerprint readers controlling access to these, as well as their secure basement parking, private lift and stairwell,” he says.

Prisoner security has also been beefed up, with the new court house featuring a separate prisoner staircase that leads directly from the basement cell block to the holding cells on each level.

He says the building includes 30 holding cells in the basement and a further 13 secure holding cells located on the different levels, alongside the court rooms.

Job creation, training and community involvement were important elements of Liviero’s R253 million contract for the Department of Public Works.

Cloete says since the contract fell under the Department’s “Expanded Public Works” programme, it featured stringent requirements in terms of community involvement, empowerment, training, skills transfer and the use of targeted enterprises such as SMMEs and black-owned businesses.

Local bricklayers, plasterers and general labourers were used wherever possible.

At the contract’s peak, more than half of the 696 workers on site were local people from Palm Ridge and the surrounding communities of Eden Park, Zonkesizwe and Thokoza.

Liviero’s commitment to training and skills development also saw 88 students from these areas receive training in a range of construction disciplines.

This included a classroom based element, as well as practical training.

Most of the trainees were women and 10 of the students were subsequently offered employment by Liviero, he reports.

The project included 6 500 square metres of bulk earthworks, more than 10 300 cubic metres of concrete was used, with the largest pour being 240 cubic metres.

Reinforcing totalled more than 1 000 tons and there was 20 367 square metres of formwork, he says.

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