Housing project to benefit locals

2018-06-05 06:01

Local residents are set to benefit from an affordable housing project with the Pine Road and Dillon Lane sites earmarked for 250 houses.

City of Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille announced this at a full Council meeting on Thursday 31 May.

“I am also pleased to report back to Council on the process where we started to release 11 parcels of City-owned land in Woodstock, Salt River and the city centre for affordable housing. A request for proposals was issued for five of the 11 sites and we received 14 submissions to the call for proposals.

“The City has started the process of evaluating the proposals to release the sites. The Pine Road and Dillon Lane sites are already allocated to SOHCO for social housing with about 250 social housing units to be built there,” said De Lille.

She said to unlock the Pine Road site, the first transitional housing project is currently under construction in the site. “This is in Pickwick Street in Salt River, our first inner city temporary housing site. People living on the Pine Road site will be housed at this Pickwick Street Transitional Housing project.

“This precinct-scale approach to the development of social and affordable housing will allow the City to provide more housing, and a wider range of housing options, for our residents closer to work opportunities.”

De Lille also announced the next set of land parcels would be in Parow, Claremont, Wynberg and additional sites in the inner city, in due course.

Meanwhile, a report titled Salt River Market – Let’s build! by Catherine Stone, the City’s former director of spatial planning and urban design, details opportunities for 750 housing opportunities to lower and middle income households.

Stone says the Salt River Market site has long been in the City’s sight for redevelopment. It falls at the juncture of Albert and Voortrekker Roads, a short walk to Salt River station.

Says Stone: “In 2012 Cape Town’s city planners started a project to package well located land to be developed in a manner that would demonstrate the intent of our plans and policies to transform Cape Town. We wanted to get our hands dirty figuring out how to build affordable housing on well-located land and maintain opportunities for inclusion in an area rapidly gentrifying.”

The City bought land from Transnet to create a viable developable area and asked interested social housing partners to join in. The “ground-breaking arrangement” would allow the City to transact directly with accredited social housing institutions. “Communicare jumped at the opportunity and in 2014 the Council resolved to make the land available to Communicare for further investigation,” says Stone.

Communicare proposes a social rental housing project. The organisation has been active in affordable housing in Cape Town for 80 years and manages 3,375 rental units accross the city from Rondebosch to
Brooklyn.

Stone asserts: “To date, social rental housing is the only viable option on the table in South Africa that can bring new, affordable housing to neighbourhoods that are otherwise pushing affordable housing out. It is also the only form of state assisted housing that can achieve the multi-storey built form that will make the most of limited public land and build an efficient, sustainable city.”

The units are rented to households earning between R1500 and R15 000 per month. “National government provides a subsidy for the construction of such housing, but Communicare also have an established model for cross subsidising its social rental housing through the development of affordable and middle income housing which they sell or rent.”

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