City of Tshwane officially opens its Mamelodi Fire Station
The City of Tshwane officially opened its Mamelodi Fire Station on Tuesday, 6 December 2022. Executive Mayor of Tshwane, Alderman Randall Williams said, “To demonstrate the significant impact of this station, as of 6 September 2022, the station has already attended to 73 emergency incidents including rescue, floods and fire. The station has also on occasions responded as back up to Rayton, Bronkhorspruit, Silverton and Erasmuskloof Fire Stations.”
Mamelodi Fire Station design
The Mamelodi Fire Station is constructed on a site area measuring 19 500m² and a building size that includes the open courtyard and parking measuring 1 745m². The building consists of the following:
• a three-bay emergency vehicle (engine) room
• five offices to accommodate Fire Operations, Emergency Medical Operations, Fire Safety and Disaster Risk Management
• two kitchens
• activity room
• ablutions (with disabled facility)
• locker rooms
• storage facilities
• lecture room
• a fully equipped gym
• Helipad which is the only fully functional helipad available in and around the vicinity of Region 6
This station is built to be self-sustainable for a period of 48 hours should there be a disruption of basic services in the area. The station has a 135kVA standby generator and four 5 000-litre water tanks on the roof.
Apart from the self-sustainability of the station was the station design to implement aspects of the green building bylaw to especially consider climate change. The following green building aspects were part of the building design:
• Ventilation is essential and is incorporated into the designs for the construction of new emergency services stations, which is regulated to achieve the highest efficiency in keeping hot air out during the daytime.
• Natural light is also one of the factors utilised by including skylights and more windows in all spaces
• Landscaping: Trees with wide shading crowns will provide significant protection from solar radiation and was incorporated as far as possible into the landscape planning of the Mamelodi Station.
• Revising water management towards more climate smart water management systems. Two tanks installed for rainwater harvesting, which is stored in tanks to cater for ablution facilities (should water be cut off) as well as irrigation of trees, gardens and lawns.
The 2016 City of Tshwane Emergency Services Department recognised the need for an emergency services station in the northern part of Region 6 in Pretoria as the nearest station is more than 15km away. The distance resulted in extensive delay in response times in especially in the Nellmaphius/Mamelodi areas. After a feasibility study was conducted, a suitable piece of land was identified in Mamelodi (Ward 40). In 2017, the City of Tshwane Emergency Services Department then registered the project for the construction of a new Emergency Services Station in Mamelodi known as Station 21.
Appointment of the principal agent
The city appointed Novus 3 (Pty) Ltd as the principal agent on 4 July 2018 and HBC Construction (Pty) Ltd for the construction of the new station on 5 June 2019. In July 2019 a mutual agreement was reached between the city and Novus3 to terminate their contract.
On 17 July 2020 Silverhorns Consulting cc was appointed as the principal agent to provide a professional engineering service to ensure compliance to specifications, quality standards, construction regulations, Occupational Health and Safety and the management of the contract.
As part of the process a community liaising officer (CLO) was nominated by the Ward Councillor to assist the contractor during the construction phase of the project. The functions of the CLO were to liaise with the community on detail construction activities when required and to process complaints from the community and convey them to the municipality or its agent. The contract was drafted in a way to provide for local capacitation of local contractors. The contract required that the contractor sub-contract or source/supply 30 percent of the work to local emerging contractors which was monitored by the professional team and provide onsite training, development and employment for the duration of the construction work to as many people from the community as far as possible. The local community had various disagreements with the contractor and disrupted construction continuously.
HBC Construction (Pty) Ltd was appointed for the construction of the new emergency services station. Construction commenced 29 August 2019 and final completion was achieved 14 April 2022. Construction commenced 29 August 2019 and was completed 14 April 2022.
The project was planned to be completed within a construction period of eight months but due to unforeseen circumstances the project duration exceeded 24 months. The following high-level contributing factors resulted in the delay:
• Local community site disruptions
• Abnormal high level of rain
• Due to increase level of rain some of the work had to be redone
• Water shortages in the area
• Below standard performance of contractor which required additional services from the professional team
• Change of professional teams due to contract cancellation of initial appointment
• COVID-19 lockdown
• Availability of building material due to COVID-19 lockdown
• Theft and vandalism of the station
The total cost of the project was R 55 050 648. The cost can be broken down as follows: Contractor: R 41 609 871 including VAT for the construction of the station and R 13 440 777 including VAT for professional services and full-time site supervision.
Video: MMC Grandi Theunissen and Acting Chief of Emergency Services Moshema Mosia
Source: Charles Mabaso, deputy chief: public information and liaison officer, City of Tshwane Emergency Services