What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels in Kruger?

General Information & Discussion on Hotels in Kruger
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Lisbeth
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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Lisbeth » Mon May 21, 2012 6:04 pm

iNdlovu wrote:So now we need all the people who are against the hotels in Kruger to get a copy of the report and send your objections in to the person mentioned above. If we let this opportunity slip, our heritage is doomed, for the simple reason that once the SanParks board gets a foot in the door, there'll be no stopping them and before we wake up 7 hotels will spring up around Kruger. Please don't anyone let this happen
Richprins wrote:I corresponded with Dereck, and he is very happy that this info is made widely available on the internet...no problem! \O
Lisbeth wrote:Have a look here http://www.gotravel24.com/southernafric ... #pollfield

Maybe only the real nature lovers are voting :? :wink:
iNdlovu wrote:81% against booking into a hotel in the park \O \O \O
ceruleanwildfire wrote:Hmmm.... It's dropped to 80%. Just tossed my vote in to try bring it up again.

21 votes for? How many mods does SPF have? And H/O staff? -O
Fredericke wrote:I've downloaded the whole flippen scoping report & glanced over the contents.
It is clear they clearly distance themselves of the "SANParksd decision ... to build a Hotel(s) in Kruger.
"...... Many comments which have been received from I&AP’s relate mainly to the decision made
by SANParks to develop the hotel in the Malelane area of the Kruger National Park. As
Independent Environmental Assessment Practitioners, V&L are mandated to assess the
impact of the proposed hotel on the receiving environment only and not the decision
making process previously undertaken by SANParks. Therefore, we are unable to respond to
comments relating to the feasibility study or decision made by SANParks. We will however
endeavour to forward all comments relating to the decision making process to SANParks for
their response."

As far as I can see it will be difficult to reverse the SANParks decision that was taken a couple of years ago!!
... ‘Radisson Blu Safari Resort, Kruger Park’ will become a reality if the decision is not rescinded!
Richprins wrote:Thanks, Fredericke!

Once again, it is difficult to convert the PDF to a word document....so as to be able to copy and paste here.

This is vital, if someone can do it! (Our core business here on the AWforums, so to speak!)

For example, the preamble states that the Malelane Hotel was decided upon in March 2009 (It was actually in 2008!) and is in total alignment with the Peripheral Development Strategy, which was CERTAINLY not public knowledge in 2008/9! O/
Richprins wrote:The report also maintains itself as only addressing the Environmental impact issues, but much is made of the "Black Diamonds", and "Development Quotient ' for Kruger...which is now down to 0.3% of the Park's entire surface!! :shock:

Once again, the development in the South, (The area of which comprises under 10% of the entire park) far outstrips this silly figure! :roll:
Richprins wrote:But international visitors are also targeted now!?

International visitors are accustomed to resort-style accommodation around the world, and expect the same when visiting Kruger National Park
Nonsense!

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Lisbeth » Mon May 21, 2012 6:06 pm

nan wrote:
Richprins wrote: International visitors are accustomed to resort-style accommodation around the world, and expect the same when visiting Kruger National Park
nonsense, like you said... for me too
when we, I go in the wild... it's the wild I would like...

and even better, unfenced camps... instead of big buildings :shock:
Bushcraft wrote:Sorry guys, I have had to do this piece meal

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O/ O/ O/ O/ O/ O= O=
Richprins wrote:Thanks for that article, BC! \O

Mr Phillips' replies are an absolute bunch of "after the fact" spin and hogwash, IMO, and I shall pass it on.

None of these bright ideas were mooted in 2008 when the hotel was applied for, and the very fact that we are now in 2012 without consent being given by government should speak volumes! :shock:

For example, the refernce to land claims is nonsensical and a recent red herring...but I'll address that on the relevant thread...with new info!
Lisbeth wrote:
BC, where did the article appear?

Not even one word on wildlife and conservation. Absolutely shocking :shock: :shock: O/ O/ O/
Lisbeth wrote:At least they are not trying to hide their intentions anymore. No doubt what the future is going to bring for KNP. A few old guys must be turning in their graves in despair :cry:
Bushcraft wrote:
Lisbeth wrote:At least they are not trying to hide their intentions anymore. No doubt what the future is going to bring for KNP. A few old guys must be turning in their graves in despair :cry:
I wish that more could see it and knew where to go to oppose it. Many in SA have adopted the attitude “There’s nothing that I can do to stop bad decisions”, so just ignore them.

Sad spineless people IMO.
Lisbeth wrote:Many do not even know about it and even more do not care and among the latter, most of the medias, because that is the only way to influence the public opinion. I hope that "your" newspaper will publish an article on the consequences of the choices of Sanparks. On the riches that their policy will ruin forever and the degrade that will derive from the greed/need for money of the government.
Poplap wrote::evil: :evil: :evil:

Surely the point remains that there are already MANY lodges and concessions in Kruger (some that are struggling to survive) for all the colours of the rainbow diamonds to stay in if they have the (a) desire to and (b) money.

(And how come all journalists and reporters seem to be missing this point????)

http://www.rhinoafrica.com/south-africa ... es/page:3/

And this is where the whole reasoning of building more lodges to attract diamonds (of any colour, race or creed) goes up in smoke. Literally. See here: http://aikona.forumup.com/viewtopic.php ... rum=aikona

Perhaps this is why overnight accommodation in the Park is not first preference to the visitors referred to in said article?:
Poplap wrote:Do not wish to start a new thread, but just have to report this:

We were staying in Safari Tent 103 in Skukz at the beginning of April 2012.

Three of the beds had brown covers, the other one a green cover. I could still live with this. BUT the covers were so dusty that I was appalled. We tippy-toed around the covers, as not to disturb the dust layer.

These were the two bedside tables:

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What an absolute disgrace!!!

My fingers itched to give it a good scrub, remove the old paint, put primer on it, and cover it with a nice cherry-wood spray paint.

KNP staff are clearly not tourism-orientated? I am getting confused here. KNP is no longer sanctuary/preservation-orientated, nor tourism-orientated? How very, very sad?!!!
Lis, you are so right. Wildlife and conservation? Always on the losing side. Always exploited by mankind. O/ O/ O/ :evil: :evil: :evil:

I saw RED reading about the cycling.

Serval, soon you will be canoeing down the Sabie! Whoop-whoop. :lol: :lol: :twisted: :P O/ :evil: :evil: :evil:

BC, thanks of sharing. Are you going to write a letter to the Editor in response to this bull-twak?
iNdlovu wrote:Does anyone have any information on what Philips' background is - qualifications etc? He certainly doesn't sound like a 'thinking person', more like one that sees a possible gap and to hell with the consequences in his rush to benefit from whatever may be available to him personally. JMHO

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Lisbeth » Mon May 21, 2012 6:08 pm

Fredericke wrote:Hey guys, the Draft Scoping Report only contains & addresses the issues of the impact the development will have on the environment. (Environment Impact Assessment) V&L Landscape Architects gave affected and interested parties FORTY days to react to give comments. (40 day from date of publishing the Report!)
It will be difficult to "attack" the contents of the report as most of the input was done by supposedly specialists in their field.
Issues such as the provision of 24/7 entertainment, the relaxing of regulations regarding the time of gate closures for the 'Hotel guests', etc is very worrying.
Of course the BIG ISSUE is the decision, in the first place, to open up Kruger (& other parks) for commercialisation!
The reasons for the decision should be scrutinised as well as the process and the legality of just a few people deciding on such important stuff that concerns the whole nation!
I assume the Developer has done a viability study - MONEY is the bottom line for any commercial initiative! I am not so sure that such a hotel is viable and if so, what it's impact will be on the existing concessionaires in the Park as well as the surrounding suppliers of accommodation?

EXTRACT:
"......1. STRATEGIC DECISION
The South African National Parks (SANParks),

in line with its Strategic Plan for Commercialisation,
has granted a concession for a Hotel development in the Malelane area of the Kruger National Park (KNP) following the destruction of the previous Malelane Hotel
by a fire. It has been confirmed that the Malelane Hotel will not be re-built in its previous location.

The Malelane Hotel Development was approved by the members of the SANParks Board at a meeting held on 25 March 2009.
A Public Private Partnership (PPP) has been entered into between the SANParks and the Private Party, namely the applicant for this project. The
Malelane Hotel development

is in alignment with the Peripheral Development Zoning recently developed by SANParks.

It is important to note that

a strategic decision on the Malelane Hotel Development is in place
and that the Environmental Impact Assessment is therefore being conducted on an

approved land use proposal in terms of Park Management Plans.
Five sites within the KNP have been identified by the SANParks for development of the Hotel as per the Park
Management Plan and peripheral development policy.
Flutterby wrote:BC - The article from the Mercury makes for scary reading!!! :shock: Sounds like the hotels and 'no self-drive' are almost a done deal!!! O/ O/ Poor Kruger...what will become of it??? :( :evil:
Lisbeth wrote:
iNdlovu wrote:Does anyone have any information on what Philips' background is - qualifications etc? He certainly doesn't sound like a 'thinking person', more like one that sees a possible gap and to hell with the consequences in his rush to benefit from whatever may be available to him personally. JMHO
Most likely another one with a degree in Tourism or marketing being SANPark's Managing Executive Tourism and Marketing Director.

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Lisbeth » Mon May 21, 2012 6:10 pm

Flutterby wrote:Maybe it's time to organise our own "Gate Crash" in protest of the hotels?! :idea:
Flutterby wrote:Jacques Gerber from CRASH posted this on the AW FB page today:

Has a memorandum ever been drawn up using the Constitution of SA as a framework with looking at the mandates set for the KNP towards protecting our natural heritage? If not - please give me a shout.
H. erectus wrote:Have not read all the pages on this and also
the other site seem little perturbed about
announcing new plans for hotels.???

The daily news tabloids are running a article
to the effect that SANPARKS have other plans
regarding this hotel venture of theirs?

May I be enlightened here, sorry can we please
enlighten the white elephant 'cause it seems to
be wandering away!!
Sprocky wrote:
H. erectus wrote:Have not read all the pages on this and also
the other site seem little perturbed about
announcing new plans for hotels.???

The daily news tabloids are running a article
to the effect that SANPARKS have other plans
regarding this hotel venture of theirs?

May I be enlightened here, sorry can we please
enlighten the white elephant 'cause it seems to
be wandering away!!
\O I think the horse has bolted....or something like that. :oops:

I personally feel that SANParks have realised that the "hotel" will not realise. :wink:
Richprins wrote:NO!

It has become political, so it will realise out of sheer bloody-mindedness!

But hopefully the rest won't! :wink:
Scottm wrote:Some interesting ideas contained in Thursday's edition of The Star regarding the way forward for Kruger.

What are these people thinking, considering a rule that visitors will have to use official vehicles from camps and not self-drive? What about the consideration to close roads to additional vehicles when traffic congestion at a kill becomes too bad? And many other crazy views/ideas. If the contents of the article were not so frightening for the future long-term sustainability of the Kruger, I would laugh.

I had to check that the date on the article was not 1st April!
iNdlovu wrote:This is this Philips guy trying to justify a bad decision. In one breath closing roads, in the other no self drives...confusion reigns in the person's head. They can't even control speeding/reckless driving, how the hell are they going to control numbers of cars on roads.....put in traffic lights maybe??????? Why not, with the hotels they might as well. Oh ja and now billboards (all be they tastefully small) in a wild reserve. SanParks and it's board are a three ringed circus with the best compliment of clowns in the business in my personal opinion. Sadly stupidity and arrogance reigns supreme.
O/ O/ O/ O/
I have to watch my blood pressure :evil:
Richprins wrote:
Fredericke wrote:Hey guys, the Draft Scoping Report only contains & addresses the issues of the impact the development will have on the environment. (Environment Impact Assessment) V&L Landscape Architects gave affected and interested parties FORTY days to react to give comments. (40 day from date of publishing the Report!)
Hey, Fredericke!

As I read it, they were referring to the previous report having 40 days?

V&L are quite flexible, but will check! \O
Flutterby wrote:A lot of people have suggested getting an Avaaz petition going against the hotels...is it worth a try?
Lisbeth wrote:It will not change anything probably, but it will not hurt either. There is only the danger, that people have been signing so many petitions, that they are fed up and the result might turn out as a disadvantage :? And the interest in the subject is rather localized and limited mostly to South Africa.
Do you think that Avaaz would open a petition on such a thwarted issue?
Flutterby wrote:Lis, anyone can start a petition on Avaaz. :wink:
Lisbeth wrote::idea: I see! :lol: In any case, I have nothing against it \O
Flutterby wrote:Let's see what the others say.

These are the questions you have to answer to start the petition:

What change do you want?
e.g. Clean up Cook's Creek!
Who can make this happen?
Type the individual's name and position (e.g. Boris Johnson, Mayor of London)
Why is the petition important?
Briefly explain the problem, what the person being petitioned can do about it, and how building the petition will help make that happen. Then feel free to let people know a little bit about you and why you care about this, e.g.: "I'm a mother of two living next to Cook's Creek Park, hoping for a healthy place for my children to play in."

2500 Characters Max :wink:
iNdlovu wrote:Do it Flutts \O \O \O \O \O \O .......or we petition the minister to call for public participation in the peripheral zoning thingy
Mel wrote:I'm all for petitioning against hotels in Kruger.
And I don't care if it is the hotel itself or the rezoning plan.
Just don't let the hotels happen. :evil:
Flutterby wrote:What about something like this for the last question:


The SANPARKS Board has plans to build a 4-star, 119 room hotel near Malelane, within the borders of the Kruger Park, and a larger hotel in Skukuza, the main camp in Kruger.

• The planned hotel site at Malelane was zoned as a Wilderness Zone in 1985 by the then National Parks Board.

• For those seeking more than the standard bush holiday, there are already seven concession areas in the KNP which offer luxury accommodation, with occupancy levels below 40%.

• The Malelane site is close to one of the few remaining nesting sites of the endangered Pel’s Fishing Owl.

• The critically endangered Swazi Impala lilies on this site will be affected no matter how much care is taken.

• The hotels will both be situated in the southern region of the park, which has already reached saturation point in terms of traffic and visitors.

The Kruger National Park is a Nature Reserve not a holiday resort.

SANPARKS are the appointed custodians of the National Parks of South Africa, they do not own them. These parks belong to the people of South Africa. The Kruger National Park is not only one of the worlds’ largest game conservation areas; it is also one of Africa’s iconic attractions. The main attraction should always be Nature and never its facilities.

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Lisbeth » Mon May 21, 2012 6:11 pm

Lisbeth wrote:Why did you ask for help? :P I thought it had to be something very short. Can you slip in something about the negative impact inpact on the animals and the river etc. during the construction period. That is one of the things that scares me most about the whole thing.
Lisbeth wrote:There is a reason for my request, Flutts. I never thought about the actual building of the hotels until someone mentioned it and then I started imagining what Malelane would become in that period. Lorries, cranes, dust, noise, people and cars running too and fro etc. and this image was really terryfing :shock: Just imagine to be an impala, a lion, a bird or any other animal :shock:
Flutterby wrote:How about this:


The SANPARKS Board has plans to build a 220-bed hotel near Malelane, within the borders of the Kruger Park, and a larger hotel (500 beds) in Skukuza, the main camp in Kruger, in order to be able to offer (supposed) much-needed luxury accommodation to guests.

• The planned hotel site at Malelane was zoned as a Wilderness Zone in 1985 by the then National Parks Board.

• The hotels will both be situated in the southern region of the park, which has already reached saturation point in terms of traffic and visitors.

• There are already seven concession areas in the KNP which offer luxury accommodation, with occupancy levels below 40%.

• The Malelane site is close to one of the few remaining nesting sites of the endangered Pel’s Fishing Owl.

• The critically endangered Swazi Impala lilies on this site will be affected no matter how much care is taken.

• The animals that use the sodic pans in the area will have to find another source of minerals.

• Water will be supplied to the Malelane hotel from five boreholes, to fulfill the daily requirement of 105 000 litres. The water requirements of the SKukuza hotel will be even greater.

• Access to the hotels will be 24/7, causing unfamiliar situations for the nocturnal birds and animals in the area, with a possible increase in road-kills.

• During the construction of these hotels, animals and birds will be subjected to unprecedented amounts of noise and dust pollution, traffic and exposure to humans.

The Kruger National Park is a Nature Reserve not a holiday resort, and whichever way you look at it, the construction of these hotels will have an untold impact on the surrounding fauna, flora and waterways.

In terms of the original National Parks Act, SANParks is charged to protect our parks and the ecological integrity of the ecosystems therein, and to prevent exploitation or occupation inconsistent with the protection of the ecological integrity of the area. The building of these hotels does not fall within these parameters.

The Kruger National Park is not only one of the worlds’ largest game conservation areas; it is also one of Africa’s iconic attractions. The main attraction should always be Nature and never its facilities.
dup wrote:This hotel thing will only stop in court.Where the developer and certain people don't want to be. I think we can start to raise the money,be prepared. ^0^
Richprins wrote:I think it should be addressed to the Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs, Flutts...they have to give the approval! \O

Would also add something about "while there claims that Kruger is utilised under the 10% maximum allowed for by IUCN, SOUTHERN Kruger is already approaching that figure, and probably past that!"

Well done! \O

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Lisbeth » Mon May 21, 2012 6:12 pm

Richprins wrote:From V&L today:
Your request for clarity regarding the public review period of the Draft Scoping Report has reference.

As stated in the scoping report, the public review period is as follows:

– The Draft Scoping Report has been made available for public comment from the 29 March to the 11 May 2012.

– The DEA requested us to provide a 40 day comment period. We decided to extend this comment period slightly due to numerous public holidays in the April period. Therefore, the period is not exactly 40 days but slightly longer.

– The invitation to comment also confirms this time period.

I trust this clarifies things for you.
Penny wrote:Got to keep the momentum going - none of my e mails have been replied to but there again I did not think there would be any response! We got to stop this in its tracks. I am in if you need a contribution for a court case.
Richprins wrote:V&L are watching here, obviously, and as I said, have no problem! People are more than welcome to register with them as affected parties, just keep it civil! \O

dereck@vrl.co.za
Flutterby wrote:Done!!! Here's the link to the AVAAZ petition!! :P

http://www.avaaz.org/en/petition/Stop_t ... Xecb&pv=14
Bushcraft wrote:Another interesting letter in today’s KZN paper.

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Lisbeth wrote:Common sense and ability to observe belong to everybody \O
Richprins wrote:I'm not so sure about the veracity of that letter, but the point is the papers are hanging on to Kruger stories like bulldogs! \O

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Lisbeth » Mon May 21, 2012 6:13 pm

Lisbeth wrote:Kruger Park tries to up the game

April 20 2012 at 08:19am
By Leon Marshall

Image
The game park aims to attract tourists who want to experience the bush without compromising their creature comforts. Pictures: SANParks


The Tourism face of Kruger National Park is in for a make-over that could make a big difference to the way visitors experience the park and its camp facilities.

The changes will first become evident in the food-catering area, which is an old bugbear. But in time visitors will also start noticing it in the accommodation aspect, in the shape of technologically advanced interpretive facilities, in more activities offered, and in better traffic controls.

Change will also come to the country’s 21 other national parks. But as the flagship park, receiving about a million visitors a year and generating by far the biggest tourism income, Kruger will be in the vanguard of the sweeping review by SA National Parks (SANParks).

The general aim is to improve the quality of visitors’ experience and to put the parks on a firm business footing. But a big underlying objective is to broaden the appeal for black people.

It has been worrying SANParks chief executive David Mabunda that nearly two decades into SA’s democracy, black tourists keep trickling into parks. Only 29.5 percent of all visitors to Kruger are black. More worryingly, only 8.2 percent of them choose to overnight in the park.

It is considered vital for parks to have the support not only of their surrounding communities, but also of the broader population. This is even more important for an institution like SANParks that generates 85 percent of its own income, with the small remainder coming from the state coffer. In other countries, the split mostly works the other way round.

Image An artists impression of one of the resorts.

The state’s shrinking contribution raises questions, particularly as the government has identified tourism as an economic driver and job creator. Kruger is estimated to contribute R2 billion a year to the economy. It provides 1 932 jobs and generates an estimated 10 000 more in its region, altogether providing a livelihood for 41 500 people.

As a state institution, and one caring for several million hectares of some of the world’s most precious wilderness areas, SANParks deserves better government support.

But it seems to have accepted that changes to society have created new priorities that will cause them to have to rely less on contributions from the treasury.

It is much for this reason, too, that they have embarked on what they call their 2022 Strategy, meaning that the innovations will be systematically implemented over the next 10 years.

Some of the changes are bound to be controversial. Already plans for two large hotel-type developments inside Kruger have had some conservationists charging that it ran counter to the park’s conservation obligation and that it would harm its wilderness atmosphere.

Mabunda says, however, it was part of the transition required to make parks fit within the new SA society.

In style, the proposed buildings better fit the description of “lodge”. One is a 119-room complex of single-story chalets and a main lodge set among the trees on about 14ha just inside the park’s boundary near its Malelane entrance gate.

The other is intended to be a relatively low-rise, double-storey building with 125 rooms on a site inside Skukuza camp where the staff quarters used to be. Unlike the existing accommodation, they will offer full hotel services. This should prove attractive to black patrons, whose preference for less rustic facilities is said to have been well illustrated by experience in the Golden Gate National Park. There, black people made up 30 percent of visitors before renovations started on the park’s hotel in 2009. During renovations, their numbers dropped to 10 percent and when the hotel re-opened in 2010, it shot up to 40 percent.

Heading the changes is Glenn Phillips, SANParks’s managing executive of tourism and marketing.

He insists that the plans, once finalised, will be well researched with the help of universities and will be implemented step by step in ways that will avoid alienating the traditional market and compromising the conservation aspect.

It will come down to a “balancing act”. Some may enjoy a campfire and the night sounds, and others a more jolly affair. Ways will need to be found to see that one group’s way of enjoyment does not impact on that of another.

It will similarly have to be carefully assessed whether, or how, new amenities and activities affect the wilderness aspect. Phillips, for instance, finds it surprising that cycling is not allowed inside camps, or outside camps in parks where there are no dangerous animals.

“One should think cycling should be encouraged,” he says.

Walking trails with overnight camping sites could become prominent features in reserves like Addo Elephant National Park which, away from its lion and elephant areas, offer precious wilderness experiences for hikers. Kruger, again, has a range of remarkable rock-art sites that could be featured in a special rock-art route.

Events catering, such as for conferences and weddings, could make park camps destinations in their own right. The idea is that this should help draw more people to parks and so familiarise them with their attractions and the important conservation role they play.

“Even the needs of bikers must be considered. Surely there can be routes and places for them to get to without causing a disturbance?” says Phillips.

After years of fielding complaints about quality, franchises are being considered.

These big brands, says Phillips, have firm quality standards that franchise holders have to live up to or risk losing their business.

To avoid intruding on the reserve ambience, their billboards will be small and discreetly positioned. Also, at least 10 percent of their menu items will need to offer a local flavour, “like, say, buffalo pies”.

The qualities, amenities and servicing of existing huts and bungalows will also be reviewed. SANParks is looking at switching to greener technologies, such as solar power.

A big requirement in Phillips’s book is that of more tourist-friendly interpretive facilities.

He says it was the one thing that struck him on a recent study tour of North American parks.

“They are brilliant, also by using modern technologies, at giving visitors information about the history, intricacies and such aspects of their surrounds.”

Traffic congestion particularly during peak holiday periods in the southern regions of the park has been slated for fixing. Aerial surveys have shown that on some roads, delivery trucks contribute to the problem. This might be fixed by restricting their use of such roads to fixed hours.

Ways of easing congestion that are as often caused by lion sightings are under consideration, as well. One idea is to shut roads once a determined number of cars had converged at a sighting. Traffic could be diverted or let through as others leave the spot.

Somewhere in the thinking, though, there seems to be the makings of a bigger strategy to reduce private-vehicle use and to encourage the use of parks or contracted game-viewing vehicles.

Already visitors to the new upmarket lodge at Malelane will need to leave their vehicles in a parking area at the reserve’s entrance gate and make use of the park’s transport services and game-viewing vehicles.

Featuring prominently in the business plan are proposals for striking up a better relationship with surrounding communities.

Using the term “constituency building”, it includes working more closely with the surrounding tourist operators, such as by passing on bookings to hotels and lodges outside the park when camps are booked out.

But one of the most intricate challenges is to develop better co-operation with the many villagers and communities living along Kruger’s western boundary, many in conditions of poverty and unemployment.

The successful land-restitution claims that some had on almost half of Kruger Park have made the situation more compelling.

The claimants were persuaded by the government not to take possession of the land, in exchange for financial compensation. But the parks authorities realise that the situation will remain unsettled unless they have a stake in the park that allows them to share in its benefits. This will require innovative thinking.

Expecting parks to engage in community development is stretching their function. However, the SANParks business review reaches so wide that it is looking at charging for the environmental services it renders to broader society and the state. Among these are water-purification of rivers, air-cleaning, carbon sinks and biodiversity protection.

Mentioning these services serves as a reminder of the important environmental role the parks fulfil. - Cape Times
Richprins wrote:The only proven statement is that Kruger provides over R2 Billion in income to Mpumalamga annually, and supports over 40 000 local community members.

The rest is speculative spin and twaddle, to justify unfounded expansion and hide financial windfalls that may benefit a select few by 2022.

It may be prudent at this juncture to also speculate on the ghastly alternative outcome of this stupid plan.

1. The hotels become white elephants, or at best struggle like most of the luxury concessions, leaving Sanparks or their partners with financial hangovers in excess of Kruger's annual budget due to the input costs!

2. Few if any black visitors flock to overnight in the hotels. After all, why should they, as similar accommodation has been available inside and outside the Park for decades!?

3. Once self-drive is abolished, with the dramatic associated increase in tarriffs linked to staying in hotels and being forced to join outsourced group game drives, there is an almost total shut-down of tourist interest in Kruger from traditional "purist" local visitors, who form the backbone of Kruger's and therefore Sanparks' annual income. They/I will head to private reserves ASAP!

4. Foreign tourists, already struggling under the constraints of the Global Recession, and the regulars also feeling betrayed, will most certainly remove Kruger from their itineraries, and more alarmingly, often cancel their SA trip in favour of other Safari destinations...many of which are well-established in Africa and will gleefully adapt their product to fill the Kruger niche quickly...their governments understand their value and don't have silly issues!

5. Meanwhile, the entire Mpumalanga and part of Limpopo's economies begin to collapse in chaos as tourist revenue slowly dries up, fringe industries close up shop, local families once dependant on the age-old "Kruger production line" lose all their income and jobs, even the N4 toll-road starts to lose massive revenue, KMIA airport closes it's doors while still heavily in the red trying to pay off its debts....etc.

6. And, obviously, by that time funds will have dried up for the Conservation and Scientific Research departments in Kruger, trust me, as Government will NOT step in there financially while the other chaos is going on! Rangers will leave or be retrenched, or turn to poaching, and rhinos will be fair game like never before!

7. The other 21 SA National Parks will instantly go bankrupt as the Kruger Cash Cow dries up, leading to even more chaos countrywide!

I wonder if the powers that be have ever thought about a "worst case scenario" like this? And it can happen VERY quickly, trust me! :cry:
Sprocky wrote:Very well worded RP! \O

Should these hotels go ahead, I'm afraid this will not be a worst case scenario, it will be the future unpaved path that the country will be travelling on. O/

Somewhere, somebody has got to educate these money hungry, short sighted lunatics that are making these self enriching decisions to go ahead with demolishing a treasured heritage. If they do not get stopped,...the cash cow is and will continue to be raped! :evil:

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Lisbeth » Mon May 21, 2012 6:15 pm

Lisbeth wrote:If Sanparks keeps on neglecting the maintance of the accomodations and camps, not controlling the quality of shops and restaurants, not training the staff, ignoring the importance of conservation, undervalueing the damage of rhino poaching it is going to happen in any case :evil:
Toko wrote:A very bleak prospect Image
Dewi wrote:RP, regarding point 4. It has already started.

Last year someone on here sent me a pm asking me to sign a petition. I did not know too much about this issue at the time, so looked into it. Read all the pros & cons before signing and leaving a comment.

We were planning a trip to KNP and were about to book when someone made a statement telling us foreigners to keep our noses out of their buisness, so we did exactly that and went elsewhere. For slightly less than we would have paid to go to KNP, we got treated to luxury safari tents and accomodation. 4 superb meals a day with drinks included in the price and were spoilt rotten by the staff where we stayed.

I wonder how many others have done the same?
iNdlovu wrote:I live 31 kilometers from Numbi Gate and as I was saying to Sprocs the other day, it has been over a year since I went to Kruger or any other SanPark for that matter. As I'm sure you have all figured out by now, I love the bush and need by fix regularly. One would say a prime candidate for SanParks given location and everything else. Already I find Kruger to be nowhere near my idea of a wild environment and choose to get my bush fixes in private estates and other countries where they have not lost the plot.
I dare say that Mabunda will soon realize the desired figure of 40% black visitors to Kruger and why not, it belongs to all of us, but the figure will not be attained through an increase in black visitors, but rather a decrease in regular park visitors.

No self drives...that would kill it for me right there.
Mabunda's logic defies reason...if there are 1 million visitors to Kruger per year (or more) and only 8% are black that overnight and he wishes to increase this figure to 40% or more, this would mean an extra 340,000 visitors. The 220 bed Malelane hotel and the 550 bed Skukuza Hotel would have to run at 100% occupancy 365 days per year to accommodate 288,350 extra people, likely....I think not. So now what? Build more hotels?

What he is effectively saying is that luxury hotels would draw more people, in other words the accommodation would be the draw card, not the wild experience, if this is so it would have to be something really out of the ordinary for me to return year after year to experience some fancy accommodation at least 4 hours drive from the nearest main centre, Sustainable....I think not. And all the above is under the assumption that the current numbers of visitors don't decline.

I sincerely believe when we take into account his many insulting utterances about his existing clientele, that he actually wants the old guard elitists to stay away, should they comply with his wishes, our Sanparks are doomed
iNdlovu wrote:I live 31 kilometers from Numbi Gate and as I was saying to Sprocs the other day, it has been over a year since I went to Kruger or any other SanPark for that matter. As I'm sure you have all figured out by now, I love the bush and need by fix regularly. One would say a prime candidate for SanParks given location and everything else. Already I find Kruger to be nowhere near my idea of a wild environment and choose to get my bush fixes in private estates and other countries where they have not lost the plot.
I dare say that Mabunda will soon realize the desired figure of 40% black visitors to Kruger and why not, it belongs to all of us, but the figure will not be attained through an increase in black visitors, but rather a decrease in regular park visitors.

No self drives...that would kill it for me right there.
Mabunda's logic defies reason...if there are 1 million visitors to Kruger per year (or more) and only 8% are black that overnight and he wishes to increase this figure to 40% or more, this would mean an extra 340,000 visitors. The 220 bed Malelane hotel and the 550 bed Skukuza Hotel would have to run at 100% occupancy 365 days per year to accommodate 288,350 extra people, likely....I think not. So now what? Build more hotels?

What he is effectively saying is that luxury hotels would draw more people, in other words the accommodation would be the draw card, not the wild experience, if this is so it would have to be something really out of the ordinary for me to return year after year to experience some fancy accommodation at least 4 hours drive from the nearest main centre, Sustainable....I think not. And all the above is under the assumption that the current numbers of visitors don't decline.

I sincerely believe when we take into account his many insulting utterances about his existing clientele, that he actually wants the old guard elitists to stay away, should they comply with his wishes, our Sanparks are doomed
Richprins wrote:Thanks for that reply, Dewi! very significant indeed! :wink:
Mel wrote:I too can only support what Dewi and iNdlovu said.

KNP is not on our destination list anymore. It has become way too
busy for our likings. Yes, we never ventured into the north. But I'm
honest: When I chip out lots of money to go to SA, I also want to
see the cats. Not only, but also. But the south is way too busy as
it is already now.

We are now mainly visiting KTP, but I know that if we need a hippo
fix, we will also venture into a different park than Kruger (namely
to KZN).
Flutterby wrote:RP, Dewi and Indy, you've all hit the nail on the head, and it's a very bleak future indeed!! O/ O/

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Richprins » Fri Jun 01, 2012 4:54 pm

Contacted V&L and they confirmed that the Scoping and EIA havr basically been halted, pending approval by the minister of the Zonation plans. This appears to be an initiative from their side, and with the developers' knowledge!

Scoping should have been completed last month already!

X#X
Please check Needs Attention pre-booking: https://africawild-forum.com/viewtopic.php?f=322&t=596

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Re: What is the situation/progress with the proposed hotels?

Post by Lisbeth » Wed Jun 13, 2012 3:33 pm

"Beeld" today:


Baie steun hotelle in wildtuin’
2012-06-12 23:33
Artikelopsies Deel Kry Beeld op
Elise Tempelhoff
Meer as 3 miljoen mense in 181 gemeenskappe steun SANParke se plan om twee luukse hotelle – een in Malelane en een in Skukuza – in die Krugerwildtuin te bou.

So het Edna Molewa, minister van omgewingsake, gister in ’n skriftelike antwoord op ’n parlementêre vraag van die DA gesê.

Benewens die twee hotelle word ’n luukse gastehuis en nog ses tentkampe vir die wildtuin beplan, het sy gesê.

Dié uitbreidings is deel van die wildtuin se kommersialiseringstrategie.

Die hotelle word gebou omdat middelklas-Suid-Afrikaners van alle bevolkingsgroepe nie altyd lus het om hul “hele kruidenierskas” wildtuin toe te bring nie.

Dié mense, Suid-Afrikaners en buitelandse besoekers, is ook nie altyd lus om vir hulself kos te maak nie.

“Sommige gesinne verkies ’n moderne manier van ontspanning om hul kinders gelukkig te hou,” het Molewa gesê.

Gerhard Smit, sameroeper van die burgerlike organisasie Aikona, het gesê hy en dié groep se meer as 300 lede is heftig gekant teen die kommersialisering van die wildtuin en die twee beplande hotelle en sal alles in hul vermoë doen om dit te keer.

Die groep verwelkom die oprigting van nog tentkampe omdat dit is wat “ware natuurliefhebbers” wil hê.

“Diegene wat gepamperlang wil word en nie self wil kos berei nie, kan in die luukse huisvesting in die kampe, asook die gastehuise, tuisgaan.”

Hy het verneem dit gaan sowat R1 500 per persoon per nag kos om in die beoogde Malelane-hotel tuis te gaan, het Smit gesê.

Molewa het gesê as alles volgens plan verloop, sal bouwerk aan dié hotel in Januarie aanstaande jaar begin.

Dit is 14 maande later as die oorspronklike datum, Oktober 2011, nadat die omge- wings­­impakstudie afgehan­- del is.

Sy het daarop gewys dat 70% van die mense wat rondom die wildtuin woon, werkloos is en dat die nuwe beoogde ontwikkelings tussen 600 en 700 werkgeleenthede sal skep.

Oor die moontlike negatiewe impak wat hotelontwikkelings vir die wildtuin se ekostelsels en biodiversiteit kan inhou, het Molewa gesê daar is geen empiriese, we­tenskaplike bewyse daarvoor nie.

“Die boustyl gaan van so ’n aard wees dat dit in harmonie met die plaaslike kultuur en natuurlike omgewing sal wees.”
"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela
The desire for equality must never exceed the demands of knowledge

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