Building causes ire

2016-09-06 06:00
An abandoned building in Ben Dixen Road, Ottery is causing safety problems for its neighbours. A neighbour has tried to have the building reported as a problem property but to date the complainant has not received any help.

An abandoned building in Ben Dixen Road, Ottery is causing safety problems for its neighbours. A neighbour has tried to have the building reported as a problem property but to date the complainant has not received any help.

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An incomplete, unattended structure situated in Ben Dixen Road, Ottery, is causing ire to its neighbours.

The incomplete building has been on the property for about 10 years according to neighbours but has brought them nothing but endless problems relating to crime and health.

Velma Marshall, a neighbour to the building, says they fear for their safety as trespassers use the property for suspected criminal activity.

“We have raised these concerns with the City of Cape Town before but to date nothing has happened. We sent a complaint during February already and since then my complaint has gone from pillar to post,” she says.

According to Marshall they moved into the area during January this year and since then they have tried to get the City to assist in getting the building declared as a problem building. “Nothing has been done at all. I just know there was one day when somebody was here to cut the grass outside the house but after that still nothing,” she says.

According to Marshall they have had to compete with perpetrators coming onto their property trying to steal things out of their yard. “These guys sit at the building during the day and they have tried on two occasions to enter my yard. Our safety is at risk and it just feels as if the City is not taking the complaint seriously,” she says.

She adds they have had to bump up security at their home due to the security concern.

“We had sheeting put up as well as electric fencing around the home. It is completely closed up but it just feels unfair that we now have to go through all this trouble and expenses for a property that is vacant and nobody is assisting,” she says.

To add to their frustrations, Marshall says they have had a problem with vermin at the property as well.

Mayco member JP Smith confirms the property is privately owned.

Asked whether the property is a deceased estate, Smith says: “The owner is alive and no fine has been issued yet. The City provided feedback to the complainant on Friday 15 July.”

Smith confirms the Problem Buildings Unit inspected the property on Friday 8 July and that notices were served. 

Mayco member for Health Siyabulela Mamkeli adds: “The City has not received any formal complaints about vermin issues on this property. Now that it has been brought to our attention, the Environmental Health Department will investigate and assess whether a health nuisance exists on the premises.”

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