Chappies protests to continue

2012-02-19 16:31

Johannesburg - Civil society groups opposing the construction of a toll plaza and office block on Chapman's Peak vowed on Sunday to continue their protests.

The Greater Cape Town Civic Alliance (GCTCA) disputed Western Cape Transport and Public Works MEC Robin Carlisle's assertion on Friday that there was consensus that tolling was necessary.

"This is not the case as consensus has not been reached," it said.

"The decision to build an office block sets a precedent for the unlawful use of Table Mountain National Park land, a World Heritage Site, for the vested interests of the very few," it said.

A "solidarity sunset picnic" was planned for Sunday evening.

The police could not be reached for comment about the call to gather.

The GCTCA said this was not a formal protest march, but asked people to exercise their right to enjoy their national park.

"This is a call to everyone who objects to the construction of the Entilini office block, to join in solidarity to make a powerful public statement."

Media reports that Bronwyn Lankaers-Byrne had ended her hunger strike were false, the alliance said.

Lankaers-Byrne has been on a hunger strike since February 5, to protest the development.

On Friday, the Cape Times reported that an agreement had been reached between protesters and the provincial government.

The department of transport and public works had agreed to investigate alternative tolling systems

Development was temporarily halted last week when two women handcuffed themselves to scaffolding on the construction site.

  • Grant - 2012-02-19 18:37

    Hands off our national parks!

  • Mark - 2012-02-19 20:32

    Did you know? The title makes one think of bubblegum.

  • jeanpierre.dumont - 2012-02-19 20:39

    The road has been tolled for years - the tolling company is currently working from 4 containers painted green which to be honest is an eye-sore. Surely a well designed office that blends with the natural environment (i.e.made from stone etc) would be better than those 4 ghastly containers.

      Citroes - 2012-02-19 21:25

      Agreed, but is a R50million concrete monstrosity necessary? Not a chance.

  • mardi.stander - 2012-02-19 21:23

    This office "block" is a two storey building, about the size of a house. This place will have green-friendly fynbos ect.. on the roof. Anyway, all the money that is collected at the toll will be there to maintain Chapmens Peak and make it a lot safer for us drivers and it will not damage the environment. Don't protest about something you know nothing about!!

      Awake - 2012-02-19 21:44

      @mardi.stander. I believe it is everyones right to comment here. Who the hell are you to assume that the people protesting know nothing about Chapman's Peak. Your comment shows your arrogance and your stupidity,typical of those supporting the e-tolling in Gauteng.

      jeanpierre.dumont - 2012-02-19 21:52

      Agree with you Mardi - the plans I have seen for the office are not that bad - better than the current green tin cans.

      edward.d.beesley - 2012-02-20 06:56

      I agree that the plans are not that bad, but does that justify allowing a private company to build an unnecessary office block - that could go in Hout Bay - on SanParks land that it has received for free? What's to stop me from erecting an environmentally friendly house in any National Park, because afterall it is State land and thus my land, and what's good for one is good for all?? Peak road usage is 2 300 cars per day. A large parkade deals with up to 10 000 cars per day. Do you see office blocks outside these parkades?

  • Janice - 2012-02-20 09:25

    Excuse me for being ignorant here, but if theres an office block, what happens when Chapmans Peak is closed, like it often is??

      aletta.vanderwatt - 2012-02-20 12:14

      The building is no higher than the current ugly containers, and is designed to blend into the environment - far better than the current structures. It is positioned where it is as a result of the people of Hout Bay requesting it be moved there - the same people who are now protesting. Has any one spared a thought in all this ill-informed hysteria for the workers who've been operating the toll for years from containers, exposed to heat, cold and wind, at risk of theft from anyone wanting to steal the toll money or the equipment kept there to maintain the road? I don't think those women revelling in their 15 minutes of fame would want to work under the conditions the toll workers have had to endure.

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