City seals fate of spring
THE CITY has finally clarified the fate of the Springs Way water collection point in Newlands.
It confirmed that the spring would not be closed to the public. This after local businessman Raeez Rawoot created a petition that gained hundreds of signatures within days to stop the closure of the collection point, following an email by the Ward 59 councillor, Ian Iversen. Rawoot’s petition gained 1 000 signatures. He said it was his way of being “proactive”.
“I just took the information, which was stated that there was a possibility of the spring closing and we need water, it is a life necessity.
“It is unfair to close access to free water, while the natural spring has been around for thousands of years.” Iversen’s email had read: “The mayor has made the point that these restrictions also need to apply to the ‘free water’ from springs around the city and therefore people will be restricted, as to how much water individuals are allowed to collect.
“A meeting will be held this coming Friday with SA Breweries and the Water Department to discuss the spring in Springs Way off Kildare Road, Newlands, and how to address the current situation.
“Some of the suggestions being discussed will be to reroute the water from the spring to link it up to Albion Springs to be integrated into the municipal water system, or to SA Breweries for collection at the depot.”
Initially approached for comment, the City could not confirm or deny the plans, despite numerous attempts by the Cape Times to get clarity. But after an outpouring on social media, they finally responded. Mayoral committee member for informal settlements, water, waste services and energy Xanthea Limberg said there was no intention on the part of the City to close the collection point, but they had received complaints from residents regarding it.
“The suggestion to incorporate water from this collection point into the municipal drinking water system or reroute it to the collection point at the SAB depot on Main Road, Newlands was not meant to imply that the collection point would be closed, only that councillor Ian Iversen intended to explore whether excess water or run-off could be more effectively utilised for drought relief. We have, however, received reports of residents filling up water tankers from these points and would therefore like to remind residents that it is illegal to collect this water for commercial gain… It results in long queues forming and creates a nuisance for residents in the vicinity.”
She said residents making use of the collection point should respect the space and refrain from littering or creating an excessive disturbance. The petition can be found at the Springs Way Road water collection point in Newlands.
Yesterday, the City said dam levels remained critically low, with storage levels currently at 37.2% and usable water at 27.2%.
“Drought efforts continue to be centred around two key thrusts: being to reduce water usage to 500 million litres per day of collective consumption, while at the same time bringing on board an additional emergency supply of 500 million litres per day to see the city through as much of summer 2017/18 as possible.”
FREE FOR ALL: Springs Way Newlands is a water outlet built by a community member.
SPRING WATER: Residents fill up bottles of water from the spring.