Close to the university, the area has quick, easy access to the national road and is only a few minutes from the CBD
Pietermaritzburg, as the provincial capital and second-largest city in KwaZulu-Natal, has a key role to play in growing the local economy.
Anchoring the city is the University of KwaZulu-Natal Pietermaritzburg campus, as a key tertiary educational institution, but secondary and primary education facilities have provided highly recommended private and government school opportunities for generations.
Its strategic location on the N3 national highway offers investors an access point between the port city of Durban 90km away and Gauteng, the country’s economic hub. Development aimed at creating a new logistics hub along the N3 between Durban and Pietermaritzburg bodes well for the capital city’s future.
Founded in 1838 by the Voortrekkers following Dingaan’s defeat at the Battle of Blood River, the city is a regionally important industrial hub producing aluminium, timber and dairy products, as well as being the main economic hub for the Umgungundlovu District Municipality.
On entering Pietermaritzburg from the N3 westbound, the neighbourhood of Hayfields is on the right and a mere 3km from the university campus. Its location offers businesses quick and easy access to the national road, as well as being only a few minutes’ drive from the CBD and Scottsville Racecourse.
The neighbourhood already boasts various commercial, retail and office developments, including Hayfields Mall and Hayfields Office Park. Owned by SA Retail Properties and managed by Broll, Hayfields Mall brought 13 000m² of diverse retail space to the market to accommodate clothing and accessories shops, hardware stores and restaurants.
Anchored by national retailers, the centre, which underwent renovations in 1998, provides opportunities for smaller entrepreneurial ventures in hair and beauty salons, a pharmacy, gym and independent eateries.
Hayfields Office Park offers upmarket commercial and professional space with the neighbourhood as an alternative to operating from the CBD.
Tenders have been issued for the Hayfields Business Park, to be located on vacant land to the north of the N3. There are various investment opportunities in Hayfields, the most significant being a farm site that came to the market in February for R17.5 million. The property offered the potential for developing a 15ha site into a high school, medical facility, a place of worship or residential units.
Vacant land in the heart of the neighbourhood recently came to the market for R650 000 for 846m², offering the potential for residential development or a small commercial initiative to appeal to the surrounding community.
Within commercial letting, an 85m² professional standard office space can be rented for R117.7/m², translating into R10 000 a month, excluding VAT. A 1 000m² retail space within a shopping centre can secure R110/m², excluding electricity and water costs.
Broll Broking KwaZulu-Natal agent Elizabeth Morgan says given Pietermaritzburg’s location, numerous blue chip clients are attracted to the area, whether for the commercial office sector, industrial warehousing or logistics. Kamdar Group chairperson Mohammed Kamdar says investing in Pietermaritzburg has a range of competitive advantages.
It is the legislative and administrative capital, is strategically located on the country’s busiest national freeway and is an hour away from the Durban port and King Shaka International Airport. “Pietermaritzburg is a city of grandeur which appeals to both young and old,” Kamdar says.
Several years ago, a proposal to upgrade Pietermaritzburg Airport was released. The project aims to facilitate and access potential economic growth between the city and the rest of the country. The proposed primary air links are to locations also served by the King Shaka International Airport, as well as regions currently serviced by road infrastructure.
The upgrade has not yet gained traction, but the spin-offs for Hayfields and Pietermaritzburg would be significant.
Businesses in neighbourhood include medical centre, hotel
Medicross Hayfields Medical and Dental Centre
The Medicross Hayfields Medical and Dental Centre offers convenient access to quality private medical and dental serves, as well as to a range of complementary healthcare services located under a single roof.
Glamorous Aesthetic Skin and Laser Clinic
Owner Asheena Larkin, with more than 20 years of experience in the beauty and aesthetics field, specialises in laser therapy and superficial skin peeling.
Natal Property Consultants
Formed in 1967 and originally known as Natal Business Consultants, Natal Property Consultants began as a small accounting and secretarial practice, and employed its first estate agent only the following year. Today the company has a successful property business covering the requirements for Pietermaritzburg across its sales, rentals and body corporate divisions.
Xpress Van Rental
With headquarters in Pietermaritzburg, Xpress Van Rental offers rental services to private and corporate clients across KwaZulu-Natal. Specialising in cost-effective solutions for long-term rentals, the company tailors packages to suit clients’ requirements.
Part of the multinational City Lodge Hotel Group, the Road Lodge Pietermaritzburg brings an affordable accommodation dimension to the provincial capital for leisure and business travellers.
Advantages include good infrastructure
Located directly off the N3 national freeway linking KwaZuluNatal with Gauteng, Hayfields offers investors accessibility, visibility and ease of transport for goods moving outside the broader Pietermaritzburg market.
Hayfields is an established market within the broader Pietermaritzburg context. It is relatively close to the University of KwaZulu-Natal Pietermaritzburg campus, offering upper middleclass accommodation for lectures and academic staff, with the additional bonus of the student contingent market during university terms.
Land available for development
While located in an urban setting, Hayfields does have pockets of land available for investors to create commercial, light industrial and residential projects to further boost the local economy.
The Pietermaritzburg infrastructure remains sound. The good transport networks, roads and social and commercial links help attract investors to the area.