Opinion: Bad development bid

MaidensCove

Maiden’s Cove is a beautiful scenic lookout point nestled between Clifton’s beaches and Glen Beach in the prestigious suburb of Camps Bay in Cape Town, Western Cape. It is well renowned for its exquisite vistas of Table Mountain and the Twelve Apostles, as well as its view of the Atlantic Ocean. The parking and grassy area at Maiden’s Cove is a popular spot to watch the sunset, and there are braai areas for those who wish to make an evening or day of it. Dolphins can often be spotted frolicking in the water and during the months of June to November, it’s fantastic for whale watching.

Letters1MaidensCoveCape Times
September 24, 2015
M Jackson of Cape Town writes: CAPE TOWN has a sad history of bad planning; from the unfinished highways to the tragedy of District Six, not to mention the recent cases of the Sea Point promenade and Princess Vlei, where residents had to sue our own council to preserve public open space from commercial exploitation. With this in mind, on Saturday I attended the Maiden’s Cove development proposal meeting, and frankly we should all be worried about our City council!

The meeting was hosted by a chairperson who claimed to be neutral, yet works for a City-related company. Her conduct was patronising; question time was severely constricted, and highly-pertinent queries from resident associations were ignored; Representing the City was David Marais, a successful property developer who built Melrose Arch and Century City but now -, amazingly – works for the City “out of kindness” (as he portrays it). Is this not a fox in a hen coop?

We were also treated to a glossy presentation showing splashing whales and a boardwalk (a good idea), but no images of the 40-odd “exclusive” houses and shops to be squashed on to this precious site. He proved that our council has done zero consultation with the people who actually use Maiden’s Cove, the historically disadvantaged communities of the Cape Flats.

He had no answer to the fact that previously free parking will now have to be paid for, or that the many tourist buses that currently use the site will have nowhere to park. Traffic and sewage details were missing, and incredibly, an EIA will only be considered after rezoning.

This proposed development is an abomination, and an insult to the heritage that makes Cape Town so special. De Lille is getting a reputation for ignoring even her own council’s advice to steamroll bad development through. If she allows the Maiden’s Cove rezoning to continue, is she really fit to be mayor? Municipal elections are approaching. Shouldn’t we be sending a message that DA councillors who support this no longer deserve their jobs?

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