via $18mln entertainment park for Vic Falls 30 October 2014
AFRICA Albida Tourism (AAT) says it will build a historical and recreational park in the resort town of Victoria Falls at a cost of $18 million, the biggest private investment in the tourism hub for over a decade.
The developers said the park could attract up to 120,000 visitors yearly and increase the average stay of tourists in the town from three to four days.
AAT chairman Dave Glynn told Victoria Falls town councillors this week that the park, named Santonga, will be built on 80 hectares of land adjacent to the Victoria Falls Safari lodge and will open to the public in mid-2016.
“This $18 million Santonga education and entertainment park will be a must-see for tourists. It is expected to bring major benefits to the Victoria Falls community and is set to create 1,500 jobs,” Glynn said.
Last year, the government started refurbishing the Victoria Falls International Airport at a cost of $150 million to increase its passenger handling capacity.
The expansion work, which is being carried out by China Jiangsu and funded by China Exim Bank, also includes upgrading the domestic terminal building, constructing a new fire station, control tower and installation of state-of-the-art aviation equipment.
“If we get people to stay just one day longer, occupancies in the town will go up by over 40 percent. Accommodation and transport providers will get extra business of between 20 and 40 percent,” said Glynn.
He added that visitors would be taken through a journey from the earth’s formation to modern life and also the history of the Victoria Falls. The park would have educational and entertainment facilities to help council widen its revenue base.
The project would not rival the $300 million “Disneyland in Africa” theme park envisaged by tourism minister, Walter Mzembi to be built on 1,200 ha of land near the airport.
With Zanu and government having siphoned off nearly all the golden eggs laid in the country and killed most of the geese that used to lay them – a Victoria Falls Park could be a little 80 Ha bubble of normality for foreigners in a 39 million Ha bubble of Hell? Or perhaps an 80 Ha micro economy utopia in the 39 million Ha macro economy of hell? I wonder what is in store for the other 12 998 500 citizens who do not have jobs on the remaining 38 999 980 Ha in Hell? “Let them eat cake, I suppose!”
Don’t be ridiculous! People don’t come to Zimababwe or the Falls for built museums or educational centres…they come because it is one of the last natural wonders … Anyone can build stuff, wildlife is unique. Preserve the natural environment, make sure the tourists are safe, keep wildlife protected with the money you would spend on the centre.
I am really worried about this hurried development at V Falls which could lead to environmental damage of this small town.We have to be careful not to make the same mistakes as the Chinese, whereby they now have serious air pollution in their industrial centres.
When you plan for the ‘Disneyland in Africa’ at V Falls about 20 kms from the town- are you building that infrastructure for foreigners only with no regards for the locals!! This does not make sense at all.Go to Japan and see where their Tokyo Disneyland is built.It is situated in a place where its easy for locals and foreigners to access because it is supposed to cater for both locals and foreigners.It is absolutely important that when we plan for these new structures we should not forget the locals because these are the owners of this land not foreigners.
I am not against development, but this type of development should be done properly not to affect our environment and disadvantage the locals.In most cases true tourists want to mix with the locals to learn more about our country.This is what I normally do when I visit other countries,I mix with their locals to get the true picture about their culture and their day to day life style.
Another “wonder of the world” ruined then !!!
The millions of diasporans driven out by Zanu are busy telling their international fellow persons not to go to Zimbabwe on holiday because of the way Zanu and its friends all treat the common people of Zimbabwe. It is a very successful campaign (the economy and tourism have felt it?) and building multimillion dollar Sandton City like complexes might well be way off the mark? Why bother to feed a genocidal regime unless they perhaps feed you?