Princess Vlei gets World Design Capital seal

The forum, which was formed to fight city council plans to allow a shopping mall and taxi rank in one of the few green lungs on the Cape Flats, said their project was to transform the land around the vlei into an urban nature park.

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Civic Groups petition Cape Town Council

THE PRESENCE of unique agricultural soils on Uitkamp farm in Durbanvillle was played down or even ignored in the decision-making process that approved extensive development on this historic property, say civic groups.

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Civic groups take aim at Uitkamp

It is also part of a general gripe by civic groups, through the Greater Cape Town Civic Alliance, about the allegedly pro-development planning policies and decisions by the DA-led city and province. This has also become an election issue.

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Forum calls on city to halt Uitkamp discussions

And the civic group, which represents about 13 ratepayers’ associations and forums, has asked Local Government MEC Anton Bredell to intervene and investigate the possibility that “maladministration, fraud, corruption or any other serious malpractice” occurred in the decision to consider the application in council, despite a pending high court application about the environmental approvals needed.

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GCTCA response to City’s letter on the withdrawal of the CTSDF

Cllr Bloor’s letter of 10 April “Lack of understanding of city’s development framework and planning processes” is, I fear, somewhat economical with the truth.

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Not certain about Minister’s decision on Philippi – City of Cape Town

Responding to a request for comment about two critical decisions announced yesterday by planning MEC Anton Bredell, Herron appeared to suggest that these decisions could be ultra vires (unlawful).

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Red Alert on Public Open Space

The City of Cape Town and the Western Cape government are supposed to be the guardians of our public open space – note the description PUBLIC open space – but they don’t care about the public. They act as if public open space were their very own property, to do with what they wish and sell it off as they please, to fill the city’s coffers.

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Those who sabotage agricultural land for gain must be billed

Mayor Patricia de Lille’s only response to the PHA community however is shocking. It seems that she is only interested in trying to politicise the suffering, while ignoring what could become an environmental disaster under her watch. On September 30, the alliance noted in the mayor’s newsletter “Cape Town This Week: Cape Town’s water supply allows the City to maintain high levels of service delivery” how she espoused all the virtues of Cape Town and it’s water infrastructure, and boasted about the 100 years of infrastructure we enjoy.

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Save our precious Princess Vlei space

CAPE Town is indeed blessed with good citizens such as Janey Ball and Ben Rabinowitz of Seafront for all (Seafa) who need to be congratulated for their sterling work in saving the Sea Point Pavilion for the people. The City of Cape Town also deserves our congratulations for listening to the people and making the correct decision to preserve the pavilion for future generations, albeit after a lengthy and costly battle.

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Save the Philippi Horticultural Area!

On the 31 July 2013 the City of Cape Town Mayoral Committee (MAYCO) approved the housing development proposed by MSP in the SW corner of the PHA. They ignored the urban edge zoning recommendations by City Planners and others.

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Court battle looms over Durbanville property development on farm land

Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning MEC Anton Bredell’s environmental approval for the development is being challenged in the Western Cape High Court by the Durbanville Community Forum, which represents 13 ratepayers’ associations. The would- be developer, the AFM Louw Family Trust, also has to get planning approval from the city to rezone and subdivide the property, as well as consent use for those parts of the development that would not comply with rezoning regulations.

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Veggies v homes in land fight

MSP Developments wants to build on a 260ha slice of the 3 000ha Philippi horticultural area – made up of farms, dunes, wetlands and two informal settlements. The city council backed the plan last month, despite it falling outside the official urban edge and being in an area providing local fresh-food markets with about 100 000 tons of food a year. The plan awaits final approval by Western Cape MEC for local government Anton Bredell, but residents have gone to court to block him from giving it the go-ahead.

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Power and arrogance in council structures

There already seems to be power arrogance at play in these matters, as the impact of public participation is whittled away by emotive responses to community objections to developments which were felt not to be in their best interest. We must have rigorous public engagement to ensure balanced development in the city where nature and the built environment can be in harmony.

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Undignified rant

Unfortunately her record as mayor of Cape Town has been less illustrious but it gives us no pleasure to do our duty as citizens concerned with the direction that the City’s administration is heading, by taking her to task when we perceive serious mistakes being made. In this process we always say who we are, as does everyone who writes to the local media – our letters & articles would not be accepted for publication otherwise, so her rant about “nameless sources” is undignified.

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Forced Proposal

If the mayor recommends the proposal, which of her councillors is going to stand against her? I have it on good authority that at least one councillor who dared to move that the item be taken off the agenda was subsequently hauled before a DA disciplinary committee.

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DA Pandering To Economic Hit Men

Our city leadership under the governance of the Democratic Alliance (DA), have indicated clear intent to smother our hard-fought for inclusive, democratic governance system. They have instead prioritised a system of red carpets for business allies, under the auspices of a business friendly administration. Worse yet, they take major decisions, such as the alienation of high potential agricultural land, without due process or consideration. The instruction for the DA caucus to vote en bloc for the alienation of the Phillipi Horticultural Area (PHA) was legally questionable.

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