21 victoria street bantry bay

The Sea Point Fresnaye Bantry Bay Ratepayers’ and Residents’ Association (SFB) emphasizes the need for a comprehensive approach to development in the densely populated area.

A recent proposal to develop an apartment block at Erf 334, 21 Victoria Road in Bantry Bay has sparked opposition from both SFB and the City’s Environment and Heritage Management Spatial Planning and Environment Department. They have challenged the application to demolish the existing building on heritage grounds.

Heritage Western Cape (HWC) has dismissed the objections to the demolition application but has set specific conditions for the replacement building. The height of the new building must not exceed the ridge height of 23 Victoria Road, and it must be set back in line with the same property. SFB insists that these conditions be strictly adhered to, stated Gordon Metz, a member of SFB’s planning committee.

SFB is not opposed to development but advocates for a more integrated approach to planning decisions. Victoria Road is already a busy thoroughfare, and further densification could exacerbate traffic congestion and safety issues. A City Traffic Management Plan that addresses the anticipated increase in traffic in the area is still needed, Metz noted.

Additionally, Metz highlighted a significant gap in the authority over heritage management. The City of Cape Town lacks a city-level heritage authority to make decisions in the best interest of local communities. Instead, this function resides at the provincial level with Heritage Western Cape (HWC), an unelected and unaccountable body appointed by the Western Cape Minister of Cultural Affairs and Sport. This arrangement often leaves city communities feeling powerless and voiceless in preserving their local built heritage.

SFB continues to advocate for a more community-focused approach to heritage and development planning, ensuring that the interests and safety of residents are prioritized.

Read more via the article written by the Atlantic Sun

Share This Article: