Gym more broken down

Matthew Cannon, Mowbray

It has been two months since your article about the new public gym near the canal in Mowbray/Rosebank (“Outdoor gym not up to scratch,” Tatler, June 27), and all that has happened is the breakdown of more apparatus.

If I may provide an overview: one of the eight machines has never appeared – an ugly hole has been there instead since the start. By April 2019, the “twister” machine was broken, and, contrary to councillor Paddy Chapple’s claim that thieves did it, the metal foot plates lay on the ground for weeks before disappearing; a photo in your article clearly illustrated this.

Now, one square platform of the “side to side” machine is missing. Again, it lay around uselessly for a while before vanishing. Plus the large “multifunctional” machine is about to collapse.

Like Mr Chapple, Dr Zahir Badroodien glossed over the gym’s shoddiness by blithely calling it “normal wear and tear”.

Is it “normal” that half of an almost R500 000 installation contract is incomplete, broken or on its last legs within a mere months? And how is a permanent hole in the ground “wear and tear”?

Understandably, local residents’ healthy enthusiasm is declining as fast as the gym is.

So what is really going on, Dr Badroodien and Mr Chapple? And who is liable – you, or the mysterious “Rhode Brothers” named on the accompanying sign?

May I suggest you visit and try out the equipment personally; perhaps this will make it harder to be so casual about this expensive, supposedly beneficial, community initiative.

Dr Zahid Badroodien, mayoral committee member for community services and health responds:

The City’s recreation and parks department has been liaising with the contractor about the damaged equipment at the outdoor gym in Mowbray.

The department has advised the supplier to commence with the necessary repairs and/or replacements to all the damaged equipment, as the equipment is currently still under warranty.

These repairs and/or replacements are expected to be completed by the end of September 2019.

The hole in the ground was due to an underground water pipe that needed repairs.

The repairs have been completed. However, the area was still being monitored for further water leaks. None have been detected since the completion of the repairs. The contractor has been requested to close up the area and resurface it with the rubber matting.

The department would like to apologise for any inconvenience caused and the resultant delay in repairing this equipment.