Alex Park clean-up on fast track

2013-04-17 00:00

IT’S all systems go for the clean-up of Alexandra Park and the organisers of events in the city are thrilled that the municipality has come to the party.

This followed an emergency meeting held yesterday morning to discuss the concerns of organisers over the shoddy state of the park. They were beginning to panic over whether the park would be tidied and repaired before the start of Cars in the Park in two weeks and the Comrades Marathon and Art in the Park in June.

Manilall Inderjith, the chairperson of the community services portfolio committee, which oversees the running of the park, said they had resolved what needed to be done and the timeframes for execution.

He said he had spoken to municipal manager Mxolisi Nkosi, who had agreed to expedite procedures to allow for the repairs to be done as soon as possible.

The necessary recommendations would be tabled during the executive committee meeting tomorrow.

The Witness reported yesterday that event organisers had started to panic over the shoddy state of Alexandra Park, and worried whether it would be cleaned up to receive the thousands of visitors expected for Cars in the Park and the Comrades. They were also concerned that images of an unkempt city could be beamed on television screens across the world.

Inderjith said plans were in place to maintain communication and have a working group in place so that everyone, including the municipality, played their part in ensuring that events that showcased the city ran smoothly.

In future, the municipality would approach event organisers to offer its assistance, he said.

Cars in the Park organiser Fred Rascher was pleased at yesterday’s developments, saying that he had been trying since December last year to get municipal officials to fix the park. His many e-mails and written requests had failed to elicit a response.

Rascher thanked The Witness for taking up the cause and said yesterday’s meeting was a breath of fresh air. For the first time in a while, he said, he felt optimistic that the city would pull off one of its best Cars in the Park events in its 175th anniversary year. Pietermaritzburg/Msunduzi Tourism said it was also happy with the co-operation it was receiving from the municipality.

• nalini@witness.co.za

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