Proposed rezoning causes mixed feelings

The Philippi Horticultural Area Food and Farming Campaign.

The City of Cape Town is considering an application to rezone a plot in Schaapkraal Road, Philippi, to build more shops next to a supermarket.

If the application gets the green light the 4104m2 plot at 360 Schaapkraal Road (Erf 360) will be zoned from Rural to Local Business for a “series of line shops and
one supermarket-type anchor tenant”.

The closing date for comments and objections was due on October 14.

There are homes, a Pick * Pay and a local spaza shop nearby on Schaapkraal Road.

Local Business 2’s primary use is for a shop, office, clinic, flats, guest house and service trade.

The application was submitted by architect Barry Abrahams on behalf of the Fadiel Bowas Family Trust. He says the development will bring more jobs to the area.

Philippi Horticultural Area (PHA) Food and Farming Campaign chairman, Nazeer Sonday, is against the proposal. He says the area doesn’t need more shops, and a rezoning would draw more “unnecessary development”.

The Pick * Pay already adequately served the needs of the small community on Schaapkraal Road, he said.

“We don’t need any more shops, especially if you’re going to place the shop right next to the Pick * Pay. It makes no sense to get shops from the outside when we already have local traders in here. That would be taking away from them.”

But the proposal says surrounding plots are variously zoned for agriculture, residential and commercial use and more shops will benefit suppliers and create jobs both during and after construction; and the shops will be conveniently close to homes and public transport.

Mr Sonday said Schaapkraal Road was already congested, and more shops would only make it worse.

“If we allow this development they will just continue more and more,” he said.

The proposal says there will be no significant disruption to traffic and there will be on-site park-

Mayoral committee member for spatial planning and environment, Marian Nieuwoudt, said the development would have to comply with the City’s municipal spatial development framework.

“The framework requires the City to protect the productive core of the PHA and also ensure that the development is beneficial to the greater good of the local community,” she said.

Last month, the Bulletin, reported that the City of Cape Town’s Advisory Panel on Planning Appeals had given the go-ahead for four private-sector developments on a “vacant and neglected” plot in Knole Park, Philippi.

The City said the development would provide more than 240 “affordable housing” units in Philippi.

Ms Niewoudt said the Knole Park development got the nod because it would put vacant urban land to good use.

But the PHA Food and Farming Campaign says it’s just another ploy by the
City to make money off arable PHA

The PHA Food and Farming Campaign has been battling the City and Province over plans to develop large parts of the farmlands, including an 11 000 hectare portion for a shopping centre,
30 000 houses, a private school and
an industrial area.

It’s a battle that has ended up in the Western Cape High Court.