Woodstock development proposal raises concerns

Woodstock residents are unhappy about an application to build a 27m high block of flats on the corner of Ravenscraig Road and Upper Warwick Street, claiming the “monstrosity” would not benefit the area and only cause further problems.

The application is for 170 residential units and 259 parking bays but these plans have not been welcomed, with residents considering drawing up a petition and submitting a letter of objection.

An irate Rafiq Shaboodien is one of those who felt the development would not fit the area. “The residents will have to put up with this monstrosity right on their doorstep.

“This massive building would mean more people would come into the area, traffic would increase and parking will also become a nightmare.”

Mr Shaboodien also felt that before the City of Cape Town passed or approved any plans, the officials should visit the area and consider all factors.

The application for the development is proposed for a site which is located on a route that is well-known for “rat running” during the late afternoon traffic jams.

“There is no doubt that if this building is introduced, traffic will be heavily impacted. We are going to see more cars, more people and more frustration growing within the area. I cannot see why the City would consider something like this for our area and they simply cannot understand that this building will not be right for this community,” Mr Shaboodien said.

He has gathered residents to draw up a petition outlining their grievances.

“I want to get my objections in before this cut-off date, because if the development proposal was much smaller, it would be fine. But if you asking me to be okay with having a 10-storey building right on my doorstep, then I have a massive problem with that,” Mr Shaboodien said.

Donovan Andrews, who has been living in the area for nearly 10 years, said while he welcomed “transition and change”, he found the application simply “appalling”.

“I urge anybody to go and look at this space.”When people leave their houses, they will have to now look into this concrete block of mess. The people who sign these applications off do not take this into consideration. It’s all about money and power.”

Mr Andrews believed that any petition drawn up by residents would “fall upon deaf ears,” as the City would eventually allow developers to go ahead “if the price is right”.

“This is all about money at the end of the day. The City is just showing courtesy by allowing the residents to share their views.

“How many cases have you already seen where people object against a development, but the building still ends up being constructed? Woodstock is prime land at the moment and the City, including developers, know that,” he said.

Residents have until Monday July 24 to have their say on the development application.

According to a notice served upon all residents surrounding the site, “no late comment or objections will be considered unless the City Manager has agreed thereto in writing”, along with, “an objection, comment or representation which does not meet the requirements in this notice may be disregarded”.

By the time this edition went to print, Mayco member for area north, Suzette Little, said the City’s Development Management Department was not aware of any objections to the application.

She confirmed that the City had issued notices to the interested and affected parties, with notices also clearly displayed on the site.

“The application is currently still being advertised so the merits have not yet been evaluated,” Ms Little said.

The Tatler made efforts to gain comment from the developers, but were unsuccessful at the time of going to print.

To lodge objections, comments or representations, email comments_objections.tablebay@capetown.gov.za or contact the District’s secretary on 021 400 6444 for more information or to make arrangements to inspect the application.