In 1998, the South African government proclaimed 12 harbours as dedicated fishing harbours under the operational management of the Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism (DEAT). Previously, these harbours had been neglected to the extent that the infrastructure had deteriorated, leading to unsafe and non-functional conditions.
In response to the backlog experienced in the maintenance of government facilities, the Department of Public Works (DPW) initiated a Repair and Maintenance Programme (RAMP) in 1999. Virtual Consulting Engineers was appointed in 2001 as Programme Manager responsible for the implementation and management of a RAMP for the 12 proclaimed fishing harbours. From 2001 to 2007, 25 repair and maintenance contracts were implemented, to a total value of R520 million, at Lamberts Bay, Laaiplek, St Helena Bay, Saldanha Bay, Hout Bay, Kalk Bay, Gordon’s Bay, Hermanus, Gans Bay, Arniston, Struis Bay and Still Bay.
As Programme Manager of the Repair and Maintenance Programme (RAMP) for the 12 fishing harbours, Virtual Consulting Engineers managed the services in respect of:
- Marine and coastal infrastructure (breakwaters, jetties and quays)
- Buildings and civil infrastructure
- Mechanical infrastructure (slipway installations and cranes).