Flat upgrades nailed to crime

2015-07-07 06:01
The renovation project in Manenberg is expected to be complete by next month.

The renovation project in Manenberg is expected to be complete by next month.

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The completion of the renovation of flat blocks in Manenberg has pushed forward despite continual disruptions due to gang violence in the area.

The City of Cape Town says it “remains dedicated to the completion” of the project after it has been halted many times due to the flare up of gang violence incidents.

Benedicta van Minnen, mayoral committee member for human settlements, says City officials and contractors have worked tirelessly to ensure that this project remains on track in an effort to improve the living conditions of tenants.

“I am proud to announce that more than 1 500 out of the 1 584 rental units in Manenberg have been completed. This project forms part of the broader city-wide refurbishment programme which has seen the completion of more than 7 200 council rental units of the 7 775 initially identified in 2008,” Van Minnen explains.

Hard hitVan Minnen adds Eva and Dina courts have been particularly hard hit by disruptions since October last year due to gang activity.

“The abnormal violence that escalated towards the end of last year forced the contractor to temporarily suspend operations. In addition, soon after the blocks were vacated in order for the renovation work to begin, armed thugs took over the blocks and serious vandalism also occurred,” she says.

The City then had to ask for extra funding for the repairs and for additional security.

Eva Court A has been completed and some of the tenants have already moved back home. The rest of the tenants will be relocated back to their upgraded units as soon as the work is done.

AugustDina Court A has also been completed and tenants have moved back.

“The remainder of the tenants of Dina Court B, where work is still ongoing, will be relocated back to their upgraded units as soon as work has been completed.”

Van Minnen says the completion date has been changed to August.

“But we remain concerned about the level of gang violence which is jeopardising the safety of our residents, our contractors and our efforts to increase service delivery. We urge our communities to work with us so that our refurbishment programme can be completed on time,” Van Minnen pleads.

The Manenberg renovation project is costing R226m and includes major maintenance and internal and external upgrades, external landscaping work, and construction and maintenance of the temporary accommodation village, Van Minnen says.

Residents are urged to report any antisocial or criminal behaviour, such as gangsterism to the police

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