Municipal Planning Tribunal to have the final say

Plans to build a hotel and residential apartments in the heart of South Africa’s boatbuilding hub will be reviewed by the City of Cape Town’s Municipal Planning Tribunal, the City confirmed this week.

The Tribunal will consider a final report from the City’s Development Management Department, which is currently evaluating two separate development applications for the Paarden Island industrial area adjoining Cape Town harbour.

Marina Nieuwoudt, the City’s executive head of Spatial Planning and Environment, told SABBEX the Development Management Department was still busy with its assessment:

“The evaluations relate to objections received during the public participation period, and the applicants’ responses to these,” Nieuwoudt said. “Once these assessments have been completed, the department will prepare reports which will serve before the Municipal Planning Tribunal for consideration.”

The development applications prompted a formal objection from the South African Boat Builders Export Council (SABBEX) in which it raised several concerns, including possible gentrification of the industrial area which is home to the likes of Robertson and Caine, Voyage Yachts and Two Oceans Marine. “It has taken decades to build this industry in the Paarden Island area and as such, SABBEX objects to the two applications for (land use) departure,” SABBEX executive manager Vanessa Davidson said in the organisation’s objection. “It is further anticipated that should these two applications be approved it will open up the area for more departure and development applications that will intrinsically change the Paarden Island area from a light industrial area to a mixed use residential/retail space, pushing the marine manufacturing and boat building industry further and

further away from the water.”

“Repair and maintenance industries that support the port and its tenants, as well as engineering services such as shaft straightening, electro technical services, propeller and valve supplies, ship chandlers, pipe fabricators etc have located in the Paarden Island area because of port proximity,” Davidson said.

One of the proposed developments includes a 13-story ‘mixed use’ building including light industry, parking, 300 apartments and recreational space. The other includes shops, a supermarket, a motor showroom, offices, a restaurant and a hotel.

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