AFTER the success of last year, The Herald Urban Run in Nelson Mandela Bay will be bigger and better this time.
The event, which takes place on Sunday, September 16, has drawn more than 1000 participants this year.
This urban obstacle race through the Port Elizabeth CBD is hosted by the Mandela Bay Development Agency (MBDA).
The fun race, with 16 obstacles along the route, not only caters for those die-hard sportsmen and women and social runners, but also showcases the efforts and work done by the agency in sprucing up the CBD.
Participants will start and end the race on the upgraded Donkin Reserve.
The route will take runners through the revamped Algoa Bus Station and new Jetty Street stairway, and along Baakens Valley, where the agency is busy renovating the old Tramways building.
"Our aim is to bring people to the completed MBDA projects, and also to expose the CBD to people that have not been in the CBD for a number of years, through a mistaken perception of crime and grime," MBDA chief executive Pierre Voges said.
"The MBDA's work is around the philosophy that catalytic public sector investment, such as the R40-million investment into the Donkin Reserve, will attract private sector investment."
The agency believes that the Urban Run will grow into a serious event and be celebrated on the national sports calendar, like events such as Ironman SA and the IRB Sevens.
"Urban renewal is not only about design, infrastructure implementation, but also about security, cleansing and the resulting growth in pride, real estate confidence, art, sport, heritage and culture in our city," Voges said.
The city will come alive next weekend with a festival of activities on the Donkin between 9am and 5pm on the Saturday and 7am and 2pm on the Sunday.
Late entries for the Urban Run will be accepted until this Sunday. See www.urbanrun.co.zafor more information.