New park for Hibiscus Coast residents

2012-11-09 00:00

AS soon as the rains stop, work will begin on a multi-million-rand recreational park set to benefit Hibiscus Coast residents.

The first such facility on the South Coast, the park would be built over the next year.

The first step will be to clear the bush off the 9,3-hectare site bordered by Dairy Road, Crescent Street and Friesland Road in Marburg.

The project is the vision of Pastor Reggie John from Kairos Ministries, who approached Hibiscus Coast Mayor Cynthia Mqwebu with the idea.

Mqwebu embraced the concept — called Hope — and recently handed over the land needed for the park’s development.

The mayor said yesterday she was tired of organisations that always criticised the government and was delighted with John’s positive approach. She was therefore only too happy to release the land as the park would benefit many people.

“I did not hesitate to accept Hope when they presented their plan to me.

“I was very pleased because they wanted development and came with good input on how to help and work with us.

“We want people who want to work with the government to develop their areas. We want people who identify the problems and then come with solutions,” she said.

When complete, the park will incorporate two dams with fish, an amphitheatre for people to congregate in, a cycling trail, a playground for children and a trail for wheelchairs.

Yesterday, there were also discussions about plans for a miniature train that would give rides to children and adults.

John, the chairperson of Hope, said the project would cost about R5 million. “We will have to raise these funds from businesses and from the public, but we are very confident that the money will come,” he said.

John said his church and other locals would start clearing the bush as soon as the rain stopped, and fundraising would start in earnest.

“There is enough goodwill in the community and among the business fraternity regarding upgrading our neighbourhood to ensure this project happens,” he said, explaining why he did not believe the project would run short of funds.

Councillor Ajith Rajaram said the welcome initiative was an exciting development as the park would be the first of its kind in the municipality.

“There is nowhere for people just to go and relax with their families.”

Rajaram said he was convinced the park would be realised.

“I am so certain that money will be raised that once the land is cleared in about three months, machines will come in and start with the walkways and I am certain we will have a fully fledged park in about a year.

“This is good news for families who have limited resources and want to get together and go out over weekends,” he said.

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