In a bid to generate additional income, the Gaborone City Council (GCC) has entered into public private partnership agreements with several entities.
GCC Public Relations Officer, Ethel Masilonyane revealed last week that in one of the partnerships, the council has entered into an agreement with a company called Market Development Company (MEDCOM). The company will develop and build market stalls in the open spaces next to the taxi rank.
Under this agreement, said Masilonyane, MEDCOM will operate the market stalls for 35 years after which they will be returned to the council. In another income generating project, GCC has reserved space in the main mall to be used for parking by employees of the British Council. The British Council will pay GCC for the parking space.
Masilonyane revealed that a similar agreement was reached with Standard Charted Bank. Under the agreement, the bank was allowed to construct underground parking for its staff in the main mall. Standard Chartered is paying for the underground parking.
Over time, calls have become increasingly audible for councils in the country’s cities and towns to install parking meters in malls as a way of generating income. This is standard practice in cities around the world. GCC is not the only council that has gone into PPPs to generate income as several councils around the country have also done so. Most outstanding in this regard is the Southern District Council which has built a fully fledged mall through a public private partnership.