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The environment will be a primary beneficiary of World Cup legacy projects, with a number of greening projects planned, but it will not be the only winner after 2010.

OVER and above the tourism opportunities and infrastructural gains expected from hosting the 2010 FIFA World Cup™, Johannesburg has identified various legacy programmes that will benefit communities long after the football tournament is over.

The Johannesburg Greening Agenda is one such programme, resulting in a sustainable environmental legacy. It involves recycling rubble from the old Orlando Stadium and Soccer City, using it for building the new facilities

The intention is to make Soccer City self-sustainable as far as its water and power needs are concerned," says Sibongile Mazibuko, the executive director of the City's 2010 unit. "Rainwater will be harvested into massive retainers and used to irrigate the field and recycled ‘grey water' will be utilised in the ablution facilities."

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The Joe Slovo Drive bridge, part of the Ellis Park public transport improvements, has been completed

Using solar panels on the roof of the stadium to generate the power needed to sustain the complex is being investigated. Any excess electricity will be channelled back into the city's power grid. The stadium's floodlights will be powered from the normal grid, however, supported by huge back-up generators.

Large numbers of people are expected to travel to South Africa for the World Cup and the City is already gearing up to deal with the expected increase in the volumes of waste and refuse.

We will soon introduce new street furniture, including large numbers of refuse bins, across the city. [And] Executive Mayor Amos Masondo recently unveiled the new underground bins that are being placed at strategic areas where there are high volumes of pedestrian traffic," Mazibuko says.

Urban
Johannesburg is internationally recognised as an urban forest, but the description can only be applied to its northern suburbs. The south is bare of vegetation but, to redress this imbalance, the City initiated an ambitious project in 2006 to plant about 200 000 trees by 2010.

Another 2010 legacy project is the rehabilitation of the Klipspruit system, which has been severely polluted in recent years. There has already been significant progress in cleaning up the riverbanks, removing rubble and refuse, and managing the growth of reeds, according to Mazibuko.

"This project is of great importance for the whole of Gauteng because the river flows into the Vaal system, which provides the domestic water for all consumers in the province. The intention is that Klipspruit will develop into a green lung with new opportunities for research and leisure along the banks."

Taking the environmental agenda further, the City is grassing all soccer fields and other open spaces in disadvantaged communities. The aim is not only to improve the aesthetics of these areas but also to create opportunities for recreation.

Mine dumps
Johannesburg, a mining town, is replete with mine dumps of all shapes and sizes. As a way to stabilise the soil and prevent air pollution by fine dust from these dumps, the City is considering a partnership with mining companies to embark on an initiative to green the mine dumps.

"We consider this to be a long-term investment in the health of Johannesburg's residents," Mazibuko says.

While they are part of Johannesburg's long-term plans, these projects will be accelerated given the global focus on 2010 and available budgets. The private sector can also come on board by supporting the City's objectives and forming partnerships in the identified projects, she explains.

In addition to its legacy projects, Joburg anticipates a flood of visitors from all over the world, which is expected to translate into an economic boom.

Danny Jordaan, the chief executive of the 2010 local organising committee, said that staging the World Cup was tantamount to rebuilding South Africa's economy. Speaking at the recent business-to-business soccer convention, Soccerex, he said it would benefit those who were economically excluded in the past.

Soccerex, the biggest sports convention in the world, was held at the Sandton Convention Centre from 25 to 28 November.

"The local organising committee is operating with a World Cup budget of R3,2-billion and the intention is to create jobs and encourage the formation of more small, medium and micro enterprises."

On top of this, the Department of Trade and Industry negotiated that 30 percent of this budget be allocated to black economic empowerment companies and small, medium and micro enterprises in terms of the procurement opportunities.

In a statement released late in November, the 2010 Technical Co-ordinating Committee said the tourism industry was planning a language-training programme majoring in French, German, Portuguese, Spanish and Chinese. The Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism would recruit people for the programme as part of the tourism human resource strategy.

Job creation
The construction of stadiums will also improve economic access through job creation. In Joburg, the building at Soccer City, Orlando Stadium and Ellis Park Stadium has created hundreds of jobs.

In terms of transport, the City has already started work on Nasrec public transport, which is aimed at improving access to Soccer City, venue for the opening ceremony and opening and final matches of the World Cup. The first portion, a 4,7km long road linking Nasrec and the Joburg CBD, is already being built.

Ellis Park public transport improvements consist of three projects: bridges at Bertrams and over Joe Slovo Drive and Saratoga Road. The Joe Slovo Drive bridge is already complete and work on the other two is expected to start soon.

Social benefits associated with hosting the World Cup have also been identified. An arts and culture programme is planned, which will include women, children, the youth, people living with disabilities and those living in rural areas.

It has five pillars:

  • Visual arts, including film, video, craft and art exhibitions;
  • Performing arts, such as music, dance, theatre, busking, and dance ensembles, which must be part of the opening and closing ceremonies;
  • Literary arts, such as the promotion of multilingualism, books and publishing, and poetry readings;
  • Heritage resources, such as museums and heritage sites; and
  • Promotion and legacy.
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    Community arts centres and museums of contemporary African art have been identified as some of the legacy projects. According to the 2010 Government World Cup Unit, the estimated total budget for arts and culture projects is R150-million.

    The unit has endorsed a youth development project, Youth Development Through Football, presented by a German youth development organisation, Deutsche Gesellschaft feur Technische Zusammenarbeit. The project, launched in September, uses the popularity of football to promote youth development, especially of girls and boys from disadvantaged communities, by involving them in non-formal education and other support measures.

    Challenges
    Delivery of these projects present challenges to the host cities and interested parties. However, problem areas have been identified to improve co-ordination and delivery of guarantees and obligations. These include the need for a clear definition of concrete legacy projects in all spheres of society and implementing monitoring systems to ensure that procurement processes adhere to the national economic transformation agenda.

    As a way of addressing some of these challenges, intervention task teams have been formed to drive certain critical aspects of the legacy projects. On top of this, more people will have to be deployed to deal with the shortage of critical and scarce skills required for some of the projects, for example in information communication technology.