Pretoria CBD, the commercial heart of the capital city



Pretoria or Tshwane is the administrative capital of South Africa, so the CBD is home to many government organisations, foreign embassies, banks and commercial enterprises. “Pretoria CBD’s buildings range from modern to historical, with many monuments and museums, both in the city centre or further afield,” says Leon Breytenbach, National Manager of the Rawson Property Group’s commercial division. Pretoria University in Hatfield, Tshwane University of Technology or TUT to the west of the CBD, besides UNISA or the University of South Africa to the south, are also in close proximity to the Pretoria CBD

Location and access

Pretoria is perfectly located to access all provinces of South Africa besides having an excellent road infrastructure which encourages the transport of goods locally or to adjacent countries. The N 1 south via Johannesburg eventually reaches Cape Town, while to the north via Limpopo, one may access Zimbabwe. The N3 runs south via Bloemfontein to Durban and KwaZulu Natal while the N4 east travels via Witbank to northern KZN, but to the west it reaches the Botswana border.  Johannesburg CBD lies just 66 kilometres to the south of Pretoria via the N1.

The city has access to three airports, the largest being OR Tambo International, 50 kilometres away, while Lanseria International lies 60 kilometres distant. Wonderboom Airport, served by several internal airlines, lies just 27 kilometres from the city centre. “Rail transport is excellent, as SANRAL trains run from Pretoria CBD to all provinces, transporting goods or passengers to or from ports, cities or towns, while the Metro commuter trains serve areas around the city along with the Gautrain which provides an efficient link between Pretoria and Johannesburg,” advises Breytenbach. The Gautrain buses traverse a wide area of the city, besides Municipal buses which ply greater Pretoria, giving access to the CBD. The Rapid Bus System will come into operation shortly. In addition, minibus taxis are everywhere.

Commercial property facts and figures

Pretoria CBD boasts numerous large tower office blocks, with practically every imaginable major retail enterprise on the lower levels. “All professional spheres are represented within the CBD, along with  many mega-companies, but the bulk of the CBD is occupied by government institutions like SARS, the Reserve Bank, the Department of Home Affairs, SA Police Services, the Department of Justice, or the Department of Labour, to name a few,” Breytenbach explains.

According to the SAPOA Office Vacancy Report for the third quarter of 2017, Pretoria CBD has a total office complement of 723,152 square metres, of which A grade comprises of 134,580 square metres, B grade offers 378,272 square metres, while C grade consists of 210,300 square metres of office space. Of this, however, only 1,789 square metres of A grade, 48,412 square metres of B grade along with 23,621 square metres of C grade space are currently available for leasing. The vacancy figure for the third quarter is 10.2%; slightly higher than the 9.0% of nine months ago.


The CBD offers a plethora of retail shops providing for every consumer need, along with a myriad of restaurants, coffee shops, fast food outlets or street stalls. The mall beside the taxi rank in Bloed Street has eased shopping for the taxi commuters. Church Square is currently undergoing a major revamp, having been declared a restricted vehicle area some years ago, but the historical buildings surrounding it demand a visit. “The popular Café Riche is the oldest café in Pretoria, established in 1905, in addition to the nearby Old Raadsaal building which is very beautiful,” says Breytenbach. The Natural History Museum lies opposite the City Hall near Pretoria Station, while the renowned Pretoria Zoo is north of Church Square. The State Theatre offers ballet, opera, theatre, as well as fringe productions. Movie theatres are located in several of the shopping malls along with many other entertainments.

There are several three or four star hotels along with short-stay apartments within the CBD. Medical as well as dental practitioners are readily available, while the Louis Pasteur Hospital is situated opposite the State Theatre, although there are many other hospitals in close proximity to the CBD. Damelin, along with several other business colleges are present in the CBD.

“Pretoria CBD is in the process of rejuvenation. Once completed, property costs will probably increase, so now might be a good time to find new premises for your business or invest in some commercial property,” suggests Breytenbach.

Rawson Commercial currently has offices countrywide and looks forward to assisting you in finding the right property to fulfil your needs. Please contact (021) 658 7100 and we will refer you to your nearest office.

For more information, email or visit for the latest market tips and industry news.

Leon Breytenbach

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