A Bothasig resident who says there has been an increase in the number of aeroplanes flying over his house has been assured that it has nothing to do with the proposed re-alignment of the runway at Cape International Airport.
Residents first heard about the runway realignment in May 2015.
It proposes rotating the airport runway counter-clockwise by 11.5 degrees.
This would increase air traffic over Edgemead and Bothasig, among other areas. Edgemead residents had voiced their opposition to the proposal at a community meeting in August last year (“Runway plan doesn’t fly in Edgemead”, Tabletalk, August 17, 2016).
Sivuyile Ngobozana, a Bothasig resident for the past 10 years, says he noticed in February that there had been an increase in flights.
He said the air traffic caused a lot of noise, making it difficult to hear other people talking.
“I approached the City of Cape Town about this issue in March of this year. At first I was getting responses from the City but as time went on, the responses stopped. I am disappointed because I expected my councillor to inform me of any changes like this in the area,” said Mr Ngobozana.
Ward councillor Helen Carstens had mentioned to Mr Ngobozana in an email that the issue could be caused by the increase in tourists arriving in the city.
“One must also take into account that Cape Town is a tourist destination and that we receive a number of visitors on a daily basis,” said Ms Carstens.
But Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) said the process to re-align the runway was far from completion. “The Environmental Impact Assessment is still under way and we are at the appeals phase. Once all of the appeals have been logged, the Department of Environmental Affairs will make a final determination,” said ACSA senior manager of corporate affairs, Deidre Davids.
Sharon Jones, a project manager for the proposed re-alignment project, said the perceived increase in flights had nothing to do with the re-alignment.
“The current flights over Bothasig and Edgemead are in no way related to the proposed re-alignment of the runway which cannot proceed until any appeals lodged have been resolved,” said Ms Jones.