Good Party is part of the housing problem
CAPE TOWN – The opinion piece “Integration is a threat to the city of Cape Town DA” refers to (Cape Town Hours, October 10).
It’s amazing how many times the Good Party repeats the lie that Cape Town has canceled downtown housing projects.
These projects continue despite many challenges, including limited national grants, legislative red tape, and the coordinated building hijackings of two flagship properties by Ndifuna Ukwazi’s Reclaim the City campaign in 2017.
Work on these downtown plots, in fact, preceded the term of Mayor De Lille, and continued thereafter.
When the City adjusted its strategy for these properties, it tended to translate into a higher projected return on social housing, for example at Salt River Market.
Regular public updates are released, and it is clearly untrue that any projects have been canceled.
Central Cape social housing projects at various stages include:
Projects approaching the construction phase include Pine Road (approximately 240 social housing units) and Dillon Road (+/- 150) in Woodstock; Salt River Market (+/- 200); and Maitland (+/- 200).
Potential projects at an early stage of feasibility in the downtown pipeline include the fruit and vegetable site at Roeland Street, Cape Town, among other opportunities.
Projects undergoing land use management processes to be made available for social housing include New Market (+/- 300); Pickwick (+/- 400); and the grounds of the Woodstock Hospital (+/- 700).
Woodstock Hospital, one of the city’s largest priority projects in central Cape Town, has favorable development conditions but was delayed by the orchestrated building diversion that occurred in 2017.
The City has since sought to unlock the site’s known potential for social housing, while following the correct legal procedures / routes.
City-supported Western Cape government-led projects include Conradie’s development in the inner-city nurturing suburb of Pinelands, Founders Garden, Foreshore Precinct and Helen Bowden Nurses Home in Green Point (also subject to diversion building by Ndifuna Ukwazi). All have significant potential for the return on social housing.
Good strongly supported Ndifuna Ukwazi’s building hijackings in March 2017, making him part of the problem.
Contrary to Good’s false accusation of unwillingness on our part, the City has all the will in the world to stand up to the depraved political forces that block social housing projects.
We will do what it takes to provide social housing despite these obstacles, and despite the moralizing hypocrisy of Good and Ndifuna Ukwazi.
Minister De Lille also sits on Cape Town’s largest well-located mega-properties for housing – with yields potentially over 100,000 units. These properties include Wingfield and the sprawling, completely underutilized parliamentary village of Acacia Park, where a few MPs occasionally reside.
It is high time for the minister to speak up and release the real game-changing land for housing in our city.
- Malusi Booi | Member of the Mayor’s Committee for Human Settlements
Cape Town Hours