Put people over profit

One of the streets targeted by developers over the years is Arum Road.

“Once again we see the City put profit above people”. This has become an all too familiar refrain among the people of Cape Town.

And residents of Arum, Circle and Gie roads in Table View, will tell you that it seems to ring particularly true for them. Indeed they can be forgiven for thinking that City planners have a map with big, red densification targets marked in red over their neighbourhoods.

Developers seem to just love Arum, Circle and Gie roads, if the number of land-use application notices that are published for them is anything to go by. It’s disheartening for the residents who submit objections to developers’ plans, knowing the City densification decree for the area pretty much pushes the mute button on any arguments they raise.

Densification is all very well, but going full steam ahead while doing your best to ignore the creaking pipes and the chockablock roads doesn’t bode well for the future of the good ship Cape Town. But then more people moving into ratepaying areas means more money for the City.

Residents might not win all their battles against the powers that be, but it still pays to be vigilant. We live in a city where it makes sense to be nervous about stupid planning decisions. If you ever doubt that, look to the unfinished highway on the Foreshore. That superb monument to stupid planning stands as a reminder to us all to keep an eye on our City planners.