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Sharon Strydom has been living in Hoheizen for 20 years.
In June she was called to a meeting called by the Cape Town city council and told her home would have to be demolished to make way for a four-lane road that will lead to the planned The Galleria development in Bellville.
She is one of five Hoheizen residents who stand to lose their homes to make way for the city’s plans to have the developer of The Galleria extend Uys Krige to a dual carriage way and later to a four-lane road to the new development. Residents are “frustrated and angry” that they have no say in their homes being demolished to construct a “massive” road through their quiet area.
In 2009, the city awarded a R3 billion tender to Devmark Property Developers to develop the site near the Bellville Velodrome into a mix of a retail, business, residential, hotel and a conference precinct.
Residents said they were not opposed to The Galleria development but only became aware of proposed road this year. The total cost of the road and related road improvements amounts to R72 million.
Hoheizen, near Tyger Valley shopping centre, is a secluded, quiet area with only one entry and exit point.
Strydom said when they bought their home in the neat, picturesque suburb there was talk about a road being built, but nothing came of it.
Strydom is now furious that her family might be uprooted without the city consulting them properly.
“We enjoy this area, it’s very quiet and we had no plans of moving. My husband and I were planning to retire here. We were so shocked when we heard about the plans for the road,” Strydom said.
At a meeting in June about The Galleria, residents became aware of the plans for the road, and unanimously agreed that they would oppose the road.
“Where will we be able to afford a house of our size now? We had no word from anyone in the city before or again after the meeting.
“Surely we should have been told about this. We just received a letter that our property will be affected (at the meeting).”
Her two neighbours, who are retired, will also have their properties demolished if the plan for the road gets the nod.
Residents said they were considering taking legal action against the city.
Chris Carstens, 69, who has been living in Hoheizen for 35 years, said the idea of a four-lane road through their area was “ridiculous” and “all about money”.
He criticised the city council for failing to consult residents.
“Where are we supposed to go to? This road will split the area in two and people who live on the border of the N1 will have another four-lane, busy road in front of their homes if this goes ahead,” Carstens said.
He said he had worked his entire life for his house and was planning to retire there because he enjoyed the safety and serenity.
“We all put everything into building our homes, and now it will all be ruined for a road.
I am not prepared to sell my house. It’s easy for them to say they need to break down homes for a road, but they don’t live here,” he said.