Tag Archives: RAUBEX (PTY) LTD


As South Africa’s consumers today demand faster and more reliable connectivity for a range of home and home-office uses, Raubex Infra is working with telecommunications operators to roll out the ‘last-mile’ optical fibre cabling to the household.

In a recent contract, Raubex Infra’s telecommunications division – which provides a diversity of network infrastructure solutions – provided fibre links to 2,200 homes in the Universitas and Waverley neighbourhoods of Bloemfontein in the Free State province.

According to Danie Marias, operations director of the company’s telecommunications division, the project required the deployment of specialised equipment as well as the careful management of teams of trained workers for the manual aspects of the job. He highlights the importance of working neatly, quietly and quickly in the suburban environment, creating as little disruption as possible to the residents.

The well-coordinated effort using a specialised trenching machine created a narrow slot some 20 to 30 cm deep in the roadway, into which the ducting was laid from a large reel. While this task could be best conducted using mechanised means, the shallow gulley for ducting to run from the road to the householder’s fence had to be manually dug. A termination box was then located at the edge of each property for later connection to network.

Marais emphasises the importance of restoring the roadway to its previous condition of strength to avoid any ingress of water through weak points in the asphalt as this could reduce the lifespan of the road. The gravel removed by the trencher is therefore meticulously swept up and transported to a nearby site, where it is sieved and mixed with cement by a dedicated mixer to create a soilcrete mixture.

Once moistened, the soilcrete can be packed into the roadway slot on top of the ducting, and then compacted to the required density ensuring the road layers are returned to their previous strength. The filled slot is then sealed with bitumen paint before a final asphalt layer is applied and compacted with a pedestrian plate compactor.

In addition to conventional trenching operations, this division of Raubex Infra also conducts large-scale trenchless ‘direct lay’ projects over hundreds of kilometres, installing ducting for national fibre backbones using specialised heavy machinery. It also has extensive experience in horizontal drilling for the installation of underground cables, conduits and pipes.


Work is well underway to open a second phase – Bergendal – at Bloemfontein’s sought-after Woodland Hills Wildlife Estate residential development.
Raubex Infra’s civils division is currently putting vital infrastructure such as storm water pipes, water reticulation, sewers and streets in place.

According to Raubex Infra site agent, Jaco de Jager, the work will make way for another 84 properties of 1,000 m2 each and includes the upgrading of an access road from the provincial R700 route nearby to the Bergendal Gate as well as some enhancement to the R700 itself.
On the Woodland Hills site, work is underway to complete 21,000 m3 of mass earthworks, 22,000 m3 of layer works, and 6,300 m3 of trench excavation.

“The rocky surface conditions in the area required us to conduct extensive blasting in the early months of the contract, to ensure that pipes could be laid to the correct depth,” says de Jager.

The work also includes excavations for slabs and drainage, and about 33,000 m2 of asphalt surfacing will be laid.

In line with the development’s environmental priorities and growing concerns about South Africa’s water scarcity, Raubex Infra will also be installing a grey water line from the nearby sewer station.
This water source will be used for irrigation purposes and will reduce the estate’s environmental footprint while helping ease pressure on the municipality’s treated water capacity.

Another initiative has been to make full use of the blasted surface rock. This is broken further by excavator-mounted hydraulic breakers before being fed into the on-site crushing plant for G2 aggregate production.

“We use the minus 75 material as backfill for the pipe trenches, and also supply a minus 200 fraction which will be used during construction of the development’s dam wall,” he says. “We are also using selected stone to create a G2 material that is used for the road base.”

The low-traffic roads on the estate are constructed with three layers, a selected layer, an upper selected layer and premix asphalt on the surface.
Instead of creating the base on the road using a grader and water bowser, the material is mixed in an on-site pug mill supplied by Raubex Infra’s plant division.

“The pug mill efficiently creates the mix with the required 8% moisture content, eliminating the need for conventional water spraying on the road,” de Jager says. “It also pre-mixes G1 material for our enhancement work on the high-traffic R700 provincial road.”

To ensure that stormwater is adequately channelled from the new development’s access road, there are barrier kerbs with purpose-designed kerb inlets.
Precast items for the inlets are being cast on site by Raubex Infra. To ensure the effectiveness of the storm water system, a 300 mm concrete channel will carry water away and prevent ingress.

The access road is built to a robust design given the water-flow conditions in this hilly area.
The minus 200 fraction pioneer rock layer is followed by a selected layer, upper selected layer, sub-base and base with pre-mix asphalt on the surface.

Leveraging the power of technology, a global positioning system (GPS) on site allows the two full-time surveyors to set out points and levels, constantly monitoring the accuracy with which the plans are implemented.

Having begun work in October last year, Raubex Infra’s contract at Woodland Hills is due for completion in the third quarter of 2018.


A modern shopping mall, complete with convention centre and cinemas, will grace Cameroon’s financial capital city of Douala by the end of 2019 – and South African turnkey specialist Raubex Renovo is making it happen.

The €45 million Douala Grand Mall is part of a larger development that will include a five-star hotel, offices and residential apartments being built in the near future.

“The mall and convention centre signals to the world that Cameroon is on the move, and is attracting more visitors for business and leisure,” says Matthys Serfontein, development manager at Raubex Renovo. “Our modern construction planning and methods combine with an energy efficient design to make the mall stand out dramatically from its local competitors.”

Its size, for a start, is significant; it will reportedly be Central Africa’s largest mall when complete with a built floor area of 25,600 m2 including 18,732 m2 of lettable retail on its two levels. Importantly the mall is in the immediate vicinity of the international airport with a primary catchment of 1,5 million people.

The ground floor of the complex will have 14,160 m2 of retail space while the first floor will house 11,520 m2 including a modern conference centre, cinemas, food court and retail space. There will also be underground parking in the basement.

Environmental standards have been followed in the design and construction, complying with the EDGE green building certification system developed by the International Finance Corporation. Using insulated cladded panels for the outside walls and the roof, including double glazing on skylights and shopfronts that allow for the best use of natural light, the building will be the first climate-controlled mall in Cameroon.

Focusing on large hospitality and retail projects, Raubex Renovo’s team has 20 years’ experience of construction projects throughout Africa. The company’s capabilities encompass full project development including professional engineering, architectural and design services all managed by a professional construction and development team.

Health and safety is a core focus of the Raubex Group, with attention paid to all aspects of health and safety as well as environmental and social impacts on Raubex Renovo’s projects site. A zero harm approach forms an integral part of the company’s operating strategy with solid safety programmes implemented to ensure the wellbeing of all stakeholders.

“The efficiency and reliability of our work is enhanced by our use of Building Information Modelling (BIM), allowing us to optimise our design, construction and operations activity,” says Ben Pretorius, managing director of Raubex Renovo. “BIM also ensures that up-to-date information on project progress can be easily shared with all stakeholders and contractors.”

Earthworks began at Douala Grand Mall in January 2018, and handover is scheduled for November next year.

“The project is another example of our team’s capacity to plan and implement accelerated construction programmes across the continent,” he says. “The Raubex Group has a solid reference base of completed projects in South Africa as well as in the SADC region in countries like Botswana, Namibia, Mozambique, Zambia, Gabon, Togo, Malawi, Zimbabwe and the DRC.”

Pretorius emphasises the importance of the reputation and backing of parent company Raubex Group, a leading infrastructure development group with 40 years in the business and a listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange.


Raubex Building has notched up another successful RDP housing project in Gauteng, completing 480 units at Riverside View south of Diepsloot in the Fourways area near Johannesburg.

The company’s work on the R75 million Riverside View RDP Multi Storey project – implemented for developer Valumax – began in June 2016 and ran through to October 2017. According to Raubex contract manager, Jacques Vermaak, the smooth process of construction was testimony to the strong collaboration between all stakeholders.

“Working closely with the community, the City of Johannesburg and our client Valumax, the Raubex Building team was able to ensure that we worked together like a well-oiled machine,” says Vermaak.

“Everyone played their part with great pride, striving for the highest quality in everything we did; this was a recipe for a rapid rate of production, with enviable standards that must rate among the best in any RDP construction project.”

“We work particularly closely with the community on these projects, as we need to implement a target of 60% locals in our workforce,” he says. “This means engaging some inexperienced workers, and then guiding and training them through the whole project. We also employ a highly skilled community liaison officer to facilitate the resolution of any issues that may arise.”

The client’s requirement was for 15 four storey buildings to be constructed at Riverside View, with 32 units per building. In fact, these were the first four-storey buildings erected for RDP housing in Johannesburg, according to Vermaak making it a flagship initiative for future multi-storey RDP units that are planned.

“This meant that there were a lot of eyes on us, and a number of inspections carried out during a lengthy procedure before a block of flats could be handed over to the client,” he says. “Quality control was an important aspect of this project, with the buildings’ quality and finishes being inspected regularly by engineers, the National Home Builders Registration Council (NHBRC), the City of Johannesburg, building inspectors and Valumax’s own quality control team.”

He says the cooperation of all these role players helped to ensure that the buildings maintained the highest levels of quality inside and out, with the quality and finishing comparable to rental units.

Each Riverside View unit consists of two bedrooms and an open plan kitchen, with a living room and one bathroom; in line with the specification, the walls were skimmed and painted inside, and a bath, toilet, basin and stand-alone sink installed. The units have their own water meters, electrical prepaid meters, and high pressure solar geysers on their roofs.

Vermaak emphasises that there is always keen competition for this volume of work, but Raubex Building is able to demonstrate its extensive record of building good quality projects – and especially its ability to manage excellent turnaround times within the customers’ deadlines.

The company’s reputation has also built on a number of previous projects for Valumax, including RDP multi-storeys (two floors) and gap houses in Clayville, Midrand, as well as gap houses at the Riverside View site.

Raubex Building’s credibility is also enhanced by its position as a member of the JSE-listed Raubex Group. It started as Raubex Housing in 2012, and the company broadened its horizons beyond just housing into commercial developments in 2015, hence its current name.

He says Raubex Building’s completion of the 480 units is helping to put a serious dent in the housing back-log in the Johannesburg area, and the company is looking to complete over 400 more units there early in 2018 – with hopefully many more to come. Valumax’s ‘mega-project’ at Riverside View will see a total of over 9 600 residential units in that development, a real contribution to meeting the country’s ever-growing housing needs.