The seat and main campus for the University in Mpumalanga will be at the Lowveld College of Agricultural, a site overlooking the City of Nelspruit and close to the new Provincial Parliament. Nelspruit is the capital of the Mpumalanga province and the administrative and business hub of the Lowveld region. It is the most integrated town with respect to provincial and national road and rail infrastructure. The town boasts an international airport and is close, and en route, to the Kruger National Park and the capital cities of neighbouring countries, Swaziland and Mozambique. The existing Lowveld Agricultural College is situated on a 240-hectare property that is well established and well maintained. The property is directly linked to both the N4 and R40 movement corridors and is highly visible. It is also owned by the Government and has established bulk infrastructure, roads and services. This site offers quick operational and academic establishment. It is within close proximity to retail, commercial and recreational amenities.
In the sparsely populated and arid Northern Cape Province, Kimberley offers the best conditions and environment to support the establishment of a world-class university with a student population of five thousand. The town offers a range of retail and community facilities and is an established tourism and recreation centre. Structurally, the town of Kimberley is well located within the national movement structure - on the Cape Town to Gauteng route - by both road and rail infrastructure. The town is also serviced by an airport that connects it to major cities in South Africa. The University Seat is situated in a central location in the inner-city, enjoying high visibility as an institution of national importance with the ability to establish an iconic identity. The location of the academic and administrative component of the university is focused around the established central civic open space of the city, with maximum accessibility to the city and surrounds. The central location offers various existing amenities, which have the capacity to support the new university.
The decision to establish the universities in Kimberley and Nelspruit was taken after 18 potential sites were assessed against the following criteria:
Town Selection Criteria
- The Inspirational and Iconic Role of the New Universities
- Accessibility and Connectivity
- Quality of Support Structures for Staff and Students
- Good Site Accessibility
- Iconic Setting
- Size and Nature of the Sites
- Cost and Time Efficiencies