The Department of Education in the Free State recently contracted Kwikspace to aid with a portion of government’s three-year ASIDI* initiative in that province. Under extremely tight deadlines, Kwikspace was only given three months to construct and supply 81 relocatable classrooms and 11 relocatable kitchens to 38 schools across the Free State.
Project scope included manufacturing the classrooms and kitchens as double-wide units – the joining and connecting of two 3.5 metre-wide single units to form one structure – with unit connection carried out on site. Included as standard within each classroom are windows to provide appropriate lighting, mounted chalk and pin boards – one on either end of each classroom, and all electrical cabling with accessible plug sockets. The kitchens contain cabling and plug sockets as well as all fittings required to accommodate the collection and disposal of running water and those necessary for hygienic food and drink preparation.
Acquiring this project meant that Kwikspace had to comply with various tender requirements, one of which was to empower the potential workforce in the province in which the project took place. “As we are a Gauteng-based company we partnered with a Free State company to conduct site inspections on our behalf,” explains Kgakgamatso Phatlane, Government Sector Manager, Kwikspace. “We also initiated intensive personnel training, which provided our sub-contractors with the necessary skills to conduct site handovers on our behalf.” He points out that, even though outsourcing certain aspects of the contract to local companies was part of the tender requirements, upskilling and employment creation does form part of Kwikspace’s skills development and empowerment initiatives.”
With the contract awarded in December 2017 and delivery in February 2018, the manufacturing, transportation, joining, installation and utilities connections for the kitchens were done in very tight timelines. “Partnering with the local company helped meet our deadline,” Phatlane says. “They were strategically positioned to conduct site inspections in a timeous and professional manner, and the reports we received from them allowed us to take corrective measures on identified onsite challenges which mitigated any potential delays.”
“We have been working with this education department since 2013 and this is the first time we have been awarded the longer Government Framework Contract with a three year tenure. The fact that Kwikspace, a company outside of the Free State province, was chosen as part of the selected seven companies is proof of our ability and commitment, to project delivery and education as a whole,” Phatlane concludes.
Kwikspace was recently awarded another ASIDI-related contract, to manufacture and deliver nine kitchens to various schools around the Free State.
*ASIDI – Accelerated Schools infrastructure Delivery Initiative – is an initiative by the Department of Basic Education that addresses backlogs in the eradication of inappropriate school structures and the provision of basic services to schools. It forms part of the Department’s schooling 2025 plan, aimed at improving learning outcomes and bringing better access to education.