Land­mark build­ing to go up in Cape Town

Sowetan - - AUCTIONS - Far­ren Collins and Dave Chambers

CAPE Town city cen­tre will get a new land­mark build­ing af­ter an R86.5-mil­lion land auc­tion‚ say the new own­ers.

Growth­point Prop­er­ties bought Site B‚ in Lower Long Street‚ from the City of Cape Town on Wed­nes­day.

“This site is in a highly at­trac­tive com­mer­cial area on the Cape Town Fore­shore. It is the fi­nal va­cant site avail­able to cre­ate a brand-new de­vel­op­ment and presents Growth­point with the op­por­tu­nity to develop an iconic build­ing on the Fore­shore‚” said David Stoll‚ Growth­point Cape Town re­gional head.

“We have not fi­nalised plans for the de­vel­op­ment yet‚ but en­vis­age a build­ing that would in­clude of­fices with ground-floor re­tail.

“We would also con­sider a client-driven de­vel­op­ment for the site. Ei­ther way‚ we will cre­ate a land­mark build­ing that will be an as­set for the city‚ its peo­ple‚ the en­vi­ron­ment and its in­vestor.”

The new block‚ with a max­i­mum height of 55m‚ will be the lat­est in a num­ber of de­vel­op­ments on the Fore­shore‚ where more than R6­bil­lion has been in­vested since 2012.

The 2015 State of Cape Town Re­port‚ by the city’s Cen­tral City Im­prove­ment District (CCID)‚ showed that in that time property val­ues in the city cen­tre had risen to R24 483/sqm.

Ju­lian Sendin‚ a re­searcher at the non­profit Nd­i­funa Uk­wazi Trust‚ said the property and oth­ers in the city and its sur­rounds like it should be used for af­ford­able hous­ing in­stead.

Sendin also said that the city coun­cil was not meeting its con­sti­tu­tional obli­ga­tions of pro­vid­ing af­ford­able hous­ing for the work­ing class in the CBD.

“That land is des­per­ately needed to bring work­ing­class black and coloured [peo­ple]‚ who were ex­cluded‚ back to the city‚” Sendin said.

“None of what is planned for the land is to­wards the so­cioe­co­nomic obli­ga­tions of the state.

“Ev­ery piece of land has a value out­side of just its rand value. It has a so­cial value‚ a resti­tu­tion value and an in­te­gra­tion value‚ and those val­ues are lost ev­ery time we sell off a piece of land,” he said.

All of this needed to be seen in the con­text where no af­ford­able hous­ing had been de­vel­oped in the city cen­tre in 22 years‚ even though it had been the city’s pol­icy to do it‚ Sendin said.

In May‚ Nd­i­funa Uk­wazi Trust was part of a suc­cess­ful high court bid that pre­vented the sale of the Tafel­berg Re­me­dial School in Sea Point‚ by the Western Cape gov­ern­ment‚ to the Phyl­lis Jow­ell Jewish Day School for R135-mil­lion.

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