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Briardene: More than an old brickyard

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Industrial park is a redevelopment of a brickyard area that took advantage of its access to the Durban CBD and nearby businesses.

Situated behind Durban North,the Briardene industrial area is predominantly a brown-field redevelopment of the historic Corobrik
brickyard area. 

That business benefited from its prime access to the Durban central business district and businesses on the
northern development corridor of what is today the eThekwini Municipality. 

However, when the march of time dictated it was no longer advantageous for holding company Tongaat Hulett to manufacture bricks in that location (and it simultaneously started repurposing its sugar cane lands for commercial and residential development), Briardene faced a new future. 

According to Tongaat Hulett Developments managing director Mike Deighton, the multi-national agricultural and agri-processing group has a unique land
portfolio in prime locations near Durban and on the KZN north coast. 

The conversion of this land has been a key enabler in its drive to facilitate transformation of the real estate industry and achieve value creation for its stakeholders via an inclusive approach to growth and development. 

He says the Briardene Industrial Park development on Old North Coast Road and behind Durban North formed the southern catalyst for the dramatically improved westward expansion of work opportunities into the RiverHorse Valley Business Estate development. 

Over the years Deighton has consistently stated that closer alignment between government and the private sector can have significant potential for improving the viability of rural areas and facilitating the conversion of agricultural land into key growth corridors for urban use to benefit communities living within that space. 

Consequently, the
company has regularly collaborated with government and other key stakeholders to convert 2 000 hectares of its agricultural land for residential, commercial, industrial, resort and mixed-use purposes, and Briardene is among the strategic industrial developments forged from this relationship. 

The public-private partnership arrangement with national and local government was then the catalyst for the construction of Queen Nandi Drive and the interchange on to the N2 that effectively links Briardene to the national freeway, and
paved the way for the neighbouring multibillion rand investments into the RiverHorse Valley development. 

Voltex Electrical is among the numerous companies operating from Briardene. Picture: Terry Haywood Photography

There are several industrial parks within the Briardene zone, including Brickworks Industrial Park, Thynk Industrial Park, Platinum Park, Kingfisher Park and JB Park
to bring to the market a variety of industrial and warehousing space accommodating diversity in consumer requirements. 

While the motor trade has dominance in terms of industry representation and auto repair businesses and panelbeating companies have fair
exposure, Briardene does not exclusively boast these services and customers can meet their needs for commercial printing, business training, wholesale meat supplies, medical products and catering supplies. 

Currently there is an array of investment
opportunities in the industrial zone. Chas Everitt Property Group has several properties for rental, including a 250m² warehouse
comprising an office component, ablution facilities and kitchenette for R60/m². 

Another warehouse off Chris Hani Road
offers tenants a double volume 424m² space with roller shutter doors for R55/m²and a 220m² factory and workshop facility with direct access from North Coast Road for R57/m². Re/Max has a Briardene property for sale for R7.5 million. 

The 1 290m² commercial
space has two floors with a drive-in access for the ground floor and ramp access to the first floor. The ground floor features a
boardroom with air-conditioning, reception desk, two offices, kitchenette, toilets, five storerooms and an alarm system, while the
upper floor has a tenant on a month-to-month lease worth R25 000 a month. 

Property Nerds brought a 1 280m² double-storey unit to the market a few weeks ago with a R7m asking price. The unit has a drive-in ramp for the upstairs area and the facility will provide a sound return on investment for commercial property investors. KOPP Commercial brought a small 177m² office or warehouse space to the market for R1.3m in July, a notable offering as smaller units are hard to find in an area dominated by larger industrial space.

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