Challenging development

Mario Oostendurp, chairman of Strandfontein Ratepayers’ Association

The article “Strandfontein housing development scaled down” (Plainsman, June 30) refers.

Erf 21168 on Spine Rd, a proposed sand mining area, was found to be ecologically sensitive in a recently published report, as part of the environmental impact report on the draft Strandfontein Integrated Housing Development (SIHD) Framework, commissioned by the City of Cape Town.

A few weeks ago mayoral committee member for human settlements Malusi Booi told the Plainsman that they would no longer be developing Erf 21168 “because it should be protected and conserved as part of South Africa’s biological diversity, natural landscapes and seascapes”.

That said, I would like to propose that we, as a community, lobby the City to get this erf officially declared an environmentally sensitive area, protected – fenced off or other – to ensure protection from financial and environmental exploitation, by developers and sand mining contractors.

This finding should be a small victory in our efforts to halt current and future sand mining applications, in environmentally sensitive areas.

We have yet to have public participation on the draft SIHD framework.

In the current climate, we are unable to gather to discuss the development face to face, which is acting in favour of the municipality and its plans, as we will be challenging the development.