Affordable housing for Doorfontein

The Frank & Hirsch development offers modern touches to its 350 stunning bachelor and one-bedroom units (PHOTO: Afhco)

Granite kitchen tops, built-in bathrooms and central hot water make the new Bree Street Frank & Hirsch housing development an attractive option for residents needing affordable, dignified accommodation.

The 120 End Street development is the largest conversion from commercial to residential space in the Southern Hemisphere (PHOTO: Afhco)The 120 End Street development is the largest conversion from commercial to residential space in the Southern Hemisphere (PHOTO: Afhco)

New Doornfontein, east of Joburg's central business district, gets an extension to its booming regeneration efforts as Amdec and Afhco (Affordable Housing Company) complete their office-to-residential conversion.

Frank & Hirsch, at 352 Bree Street, is the latest conversion boasting 350 stunning bachelor and one-bedroom units.

"There is a dire need for quality affordable housing and dignified living spaces. The population is growing, cities are expanding and the demand for accommodation is growing every year," says James Wilson, chief executive officer at Amdec.

"The convergence of South African society has resulted in a burgeoning middle class who no longer wish to travel far to reach places of work, school and leisure," he says.

"Improved access to transport systems and close proximity to retail developments as well as educational and recreational facilities are key factors.

"The needs of the affordable housing market are the same as their more affluent counterparts and we feel the need to meet these on the appropriate economic scale. For us, it's about helping to create environments today that inspire tomorrow's lifestyles."

The façade of the newly refurbished Frank & Hirsch building (PHOTO: Afhco)The façade of the newly refurbished Frank & Hirsch building (PHOTO: Afhco)

Chairman and chief operations officer for Afhco, Renney Plit says: "There is such demand for affordable accommodation in the inner city."

The units offer modern finishes, including granite kitchen tops, built-in kitchen cupboards, a two-plate stove, DSTV connectivity, pre-paid electricity, and built-in bathrooms. Hot water is supplied by a heat pump to prevent separate geysers increasing electricity costs.

The Frank & Hirsch development is conveniently near Noord Street taxi rank, the Rea Vaya Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) routes, and the 120 End Street Mall.

Working with Johannesburg City Parks, Amdec and Afhco have transformed the façade with French doors framing the breathtaking views over neighbouring End Street Park. Recently cleaned and improved, the park is a vital recreational space for residents. It boasts two floodlit soccer fields and jungle gym equipment, all monitored by onsite security. Ablution facilities are also available.

This refurbishment follows the success of Afhco's 120 End Street and Khan Corner developments. The 120 End Street development is the largest conversion from commercial to residential space in the southern hemisphere, with 924 apartments. The former office building has 26 storeys, with a 6 000 m² ground-level shopping area.

Khan Corner, a separate development at 102 End Street, was completed in early 2013, and has 107 bachelor and one-bedroom units.