Faults in flats cause ire

2015-09-22 06:00

Peeping holes, cracking and damp walls are the worries of many residents in Surwood Walk, Hanover Park.

These residents who live in the two-storey flats are now requesting the City of cape Town’s help saying they want the Community Residential Units (CRU) programme to be implemented on their flats as well.

Denise Collar, who has been a resident of Surwood Walk for more than 38 years, says she wants upgrades to be done at their homes as well.

“These flats have been in this area for as long as I can remember and not once has an upgrade taken place here. We also want our homes to look beautiful, but it seems we are overlooked,” she says.

Collar adds she has had numerous complaints sent to the City regarding the cracks in walls, hinges of doors as well as peep-size holes as faults at her home.

“Every time the council came out they would just patch up the walls with cement, but years later the cracks return. When I complained about the door frames and hinges, I was told they just do maintenance work on the outside and not inside,” she explains.

Collar says this makes her feel despondent because she cannot do anything to beautify her home.

“For years we have been paying rent to the City and there have been no talks of us actually becoming the owners of the flats. If we become the owners of the flats then we know we can beautify it at our own expense. But if we do that now while paying rent to the City, anything can happen and they can turn around and put us out of the flats, and what happens to the money we invested?” Collar adds.

Social Democratic Party president Ricardo Sedres says he has received various complaints from residents relating to faults at the two-storey flats.

“People are complaining and asking why they also were not included in the CRU project. The City should do something to accommodate these residents because their homes are supposed to be a place of dignity and considered a safe haven. However if your house is cracking, it’s not safe – it’s a safety hazard.”

Mayco member for Human Settlements Benedicta van Minnen says the CRU programme is a “special project aimed at refurbishing the multiple storey buildings (three floors or more)”.

“That was the specification of this particular programme in Hanover Park, in accordance with the conditions of the funding that was received.

“For other rental stock maintenance enquiries, such as the two-storey units, we encourage our tenants to visit their local housing office in Civic Road, Hanover Park (next to the community centre) where our officials will gladly assist with information, giving clarity and lodging investigations into maintenance complaints, if required,” Van Minnen explains.V

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