THE R3-million upgrade and redevelopment of the iconic Something Good roadhouse building is on track to be completed by the end of May.
Once a popular fast-food eatery overlooking Pollok Beach, the property was left to deteriorate after it was closed down in mid-2008 by former owner Juan Marsal, who was leasing it from the municipality.
The developers, Nelson Mandela Bay company Shimda, said yesterday their new venture would be beach and family orientated, and would boost the appearance of the beachfront as a whole. It would also attract tourists as it was situated a stone's throw from the Radisson Blu and Protea Marine Hotels, and various guesthouses.
"By dividing it into four outlets we have tried to offer the public more variety. We believe that foremost this proposal is sustainable and it responds directly to the community's needs in a relatively short space of time," Shimda spokesman Grant Davies said.
The facility would offer a road house-takeaway to cater for everyone who already used this part of the beachfront, he said. It would operate on a similar basis to an original roadhouse where you could flick your vehicle's lights for service or help yourself at the counter.
There would also be a restaurant- coffee shop at the existing outdoor seating area, which would be enclosed with a canvas roof structure.
The developers are also creating an indoor-outdoor restaurant, with a raised deck that has panoramic views of the beachfront.
An ice-cream parlour will operate on a similar basis to the roadhouse, while a sports gear rentals shop will offer bicycles for hire as well as beach equipment including kayaks, umbrellas and beach chairs.
"This facility enhances what our beachfront already offers and adds to the enjoyment of a day at the beach."
Davies said the development was the company's first project after receiving praise and awards nationally for its residential developments, including Madison on First, Saxon on Villiers and Brisbane on Albert residential apartment projects in Walmer, done in partnership with Davau Developments. Once completed, the facility would create between 30 and 50 new casual and permanent job opportunities, depending on how busy it was.
"We have worked closely with architects Mary Mangan and Pieter Louw of MM Architects to create the overall look and feel of the building. We have tried to keep as much of the original fašade of the building as possible, while making it more user friendly.
"Interior designer Laurie-Ann Malan has created an interior space that is relaxed, comfortable and not fussy ... you aren't going to worry if you have sand on your feet."
While there were some requests from people to change the name or revert back to the original Bird Rock Roadhouse, the facility would remain Something Good, but with a 2013 twist, Davies said. "We have the best beaches in the country. We need to protect these areas and enhance them with meaningful projects.
"It seems crazy a building like this was left to go to ruin. This is just one small project. There are so many more opportunities to upgrade our city."