Just over a year on from the opening of the 3Arts Village Shopping Centre and we have already seen the amazing effect it’s had on the community. With the development serving as a hub for events and activities that are bringing people together to celebrate their shared culture and values.
The development of the derelict theatre had been something the community wanted for years, prior to Rapfund acquiring the once great venue, with the residents of Plumstead pleading with the City to do about an eyesore which brought down the look and feel of the area. The 3 Arts Theatre was founded in 1964 and in its heyday dew in international acts including Tom Jones, Tina Turner and Johnny Holliday. Over the years it has been turned into a cinema, nursery and even a film studio before going into disrepair.
In a nod to the site’s importance to Cape Town’s entertainment history, the name 3Arts was continued. The vision was to restore the building to its former glory, creating more than just a shopping centre, but a community hub which has achieved. Rapfund, which is owned by Folkes Holdings, spent more than R200 million on the purchase and development of the community site. Further work was undertaken in the surrounding area to allow for better roads and pavements for ease of access to the site, without taking away the nature around the site.
The shopping mall has provided a place for people to come together, shop, eat and enjoy the local atmosphere. It has also served as an anchor point for the redevelopment in the area, bringing in new businesses and amenities that will benefit the entire community. The successful events such as the homecrafts market has provided the opportunity for small businesses and local vendors to sell their goods and services, leading to community and economic development.
As well as bringing something refreshing and new to the area, stores within the 3Arts Village has created 500 job opportunities, something that any community would be happy with. The site gives the community a new centre point for activity in the area, with opportunity to attract visitors from further out in the district to visit the upgrade of what was such an important landmark to the area. This has especially been the case with challenging times with the widespread ongoing energy crisis. Despite the tumultuous times of the blackouts, 3Arts Village is fully operational and trading with back-up power, and can provide people with all their essentials during loadshedding, all under one roof.