Michael Magoronga, Midlands Correspondent
KWEKWE City Council is set to convert Amaveni Long Distance Bus Terminus into a state-of-the-art road port for cross border buses, director of works, Engineer John Mhike has said.
The terminus has been dormant since the establishment of a central long distance bus terminus in the city centre.
Residents were complaining that the derelict terminus had become home to various snake species.
The local authority initially proposed to convert the deserted terminus into a market place, but Eng Mhike said they shelved the plan to pave way for a road port.
“The plan to rehabilitate the facility into a market was mooted during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic when we wanted to decongest the CBD. But now we intend to convert the bus terminus into a road port. It is going to be a modern road port where every service will be available. It is just a concept almost like the Harare Road Port,” said Eng Mhike.
The development is part of the council’s move to rehabilitate derelict and dilapidated infrastructure.
Last week Vice President Constantino Chiwenga commissioned a disused beerhall, which the local authority converted into an infectious disease hospital.
Eng Mhike said council will also look at some buildings that are not being utilised.
Most premises in Kwekwe, including Mbizo Spar and a number of service stations in the city centre have been locked for about 10 years.
Renovations at Shamwari Hotel have been going on for close to seven years now.
Eng Mhike said council will invoke the requisite by-laws to repossess abandoned and disused infrastructure.
“We have development control by-laws that we will thoroughly scan and invoke where necessary to ensure that derelict buildings are taken over,” he said.
City housing director Mr Edson Chiyangwa said stadia, halls, sports centres and aerodrome are among facilities they were eying.
“As a city we have embarked on a drive to refurbish and bring back to life our infrastructure around the city. We have already purchased material for rehabilitation of Amaveni and Mbizo stadia. We are targeting mainly the perimeter walls and changing rooms so that they become usable,” Mr Chiyangwa said, admitting that the two stadia had gone to the dogs.
As a temporary solution, Mr Chiyangwa said council had established satellite pitches that communities are currently using, while the affected halls and stadia are being refurbished.
“Kwekwe Theatre has already been painted and tiled, and we are now waiting for chairs to be purchased and fitted.
Amaveni Hall was painted, but we are likely to repaint it as we seek to intensify the repairs. As for Mbizo Hall, we have engaged our engineering department to look at the damage caused by termites,” he said.
Mbizo Hall is home to a youth recreation centre, which Mr Chiyangwa said was also earmarked for upgrading.
“We have a tennis court, basketball court, volleyball court and gymnasium, among others, housed at the hall. We are also looking at sprucing them up and bringing them up to standard. They are currently operational, but we want to spruce them up,” he said.
He said a fence had been erected at the aerodrome and infrastructure had been painted.
“We have been facing problems with cattle coming from nearby farms into the aerodrome, but we recently painted the facility and erected a fence to ensure that no animals roam into the facility,” he said.
He revealed that plans were in the pipeline to commercialise the aerodrome.