Joy as families relocate

2019-05-28 06:01
Mayco member for human settlements Malusi Booi comforts a very emotional resident during the relocation.

Mayco member for human settlements Malusi Booi comforts a very emotional resident during the relocation.

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Pine Road Informal Settlement residents, in Woodstock, were relocated into their new homes on Pickwick Street in Salt River on Monday 20 May as part of the City of Cape Town’s first Transitional Housing Facility.

At least 42 residents benefitted from the initiative, a City’s plan to unlock the first of more than 2 000 affordable and social housing opportunities nearer to the city centre.

Resident Aasimah Geduld lives with her two children at the facility. She says life has improved since the move.

“I am more at ease now because this place is safer than the previous one in Woodstock. Children get to play in the yard away from danger – that makes me relieved,” Geduld said.

She said the informal settlement was not safe and had a lot of health hazards for children.

“In the mornings some of the people in the neighbourhood had to make a fire or use gas stoves to boil water and cook.

“That was not a safe environment for children to live in. I am relieved that we finally moved.”

She said the rent for their new homes was not bad at all and that the City was thoughtful when coming to that.

“The rental starts at R400 depending on the size of the unit, that is really amazing considering the fact that many people are either not working or have a very low income,” she said.

Mayco member for human settlement Malusi Booi paid the residents a visit during the relocation.

He said the relocation was significant as it not only marked a new chapter in the lives of the residents, but it also paved the way for the City’s first affordable and social housing opportunities near the city.

Emotions run high“It was an emotional day and I truly wish that these families will see a vast improvement in their living conditions going forward,” he said.

The purpose of the Pickwick facility is to provide short-term accommodation to the households who relocated from the informal settlement in the Pine Road site, which will be developed to unlock about 230 social housing opportunities.

“Now that we have the occupancy certificate, we thought it best to relocate the families, especially ahead of the colder winter days and to counter the risk of the facility being invaded. Building supervisors have been appointed in the interim to manage the facility, while the process to appoint a management agent is underway.”

Booi said that security measures for the development of both the Pickwick transitional site and the land in Pine Road are currently in place.

“Security guards have been deployed to both sites. Leading to (today), the residents’ biometrics have been registered as part of the access control measures in place at the transitional housing site.”

He further said that the Pine Road site will be fenced and will benefit from patrols by the City’s law enforcement; the Woodstock Improvement District; Business Improvement District and the neighbourhood watch, which will assist in ensuring that it is secured for the development of social housing opportunities.

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