The backyarders who erected shacks near the Philippi railway line are desperate and destitute, according to Metrorail. Picture: Tracey Admas/African News Agency
Cape Town -  The City of Cape Town’s Human Settlements Directorate is expected to deliver projects to the value of almost R2.7 billion over the next three years as part of its continued efforts to improve the lives of Cape Town’s more vulnerable residents.

Over the next three financial years, the city vowed to continue working hard to offer a range of accommodation options for its more vulnerable residents. 

It added that it will require the support of the greater Cape Town community as well as affected neighbourhoods and beneficiaries given the growing demand for housing opportunities in light of rapid urbanisation.

Projects are located across the metro and include informal settlement upgrades in Khayelitsha and Philippi, among others, and formal subsidy housing programmes valued at more than R1,6 billion. Projects will take place in areas ranging from Atlantis, Nyanga, Manenberg, Grassy Park, Retreat, Vrygrond, Mitchells Plain to Gugulethu, Mfuleni, Khayelitsha; and Somerset West to Durbanville.

More than R330 million is also allocated for public housing over the next three years.

"We are going to need all residents from all walks of Cape Town life to support us; to think of the broader interests of our communities and to help us with innovative housing models and finance ideas so that we can overcome the challenges of the acute housing demand. We are going to need strong partnerships to deliver what is required. We will require all stakeholders to focus on the greater good, politics and special interests aside," said Mayco Member for Human Settlements, Malusi Booi  .

"In the new financial year we have allocated more than R171 million to informal settlements accommodation alone and this jumps to R250 million and R286 million in the outer years of our budget term which shows the emphasis on formalising informal areas, for instance. For formal subsidy houses and affordable rental opportunities, the budget over the next three financial years is just over R1,6 billion.

"The days of following one model of housing delivery are over. We cannot solely rely on Breaking New Ground (BNG) accommodation. We must increasingly look towards affordable rental options, enhanced backyarder services provision and the upgrading of informal settlements. We must continue working towards reversing the legacy of apartheid spatial planning by promoting transport-oriented development," Booi said. 

"At the same time, we must work towards creating affordable and inclusionary housing on well-located land close to public transport and job opportunities. In addition, we must plan and cater for a wide range of income groupings to respond to the increased demands of urbanisation.

"We also continue to assess City-owned land, including in and near the Cape Town CBD, among other CBD areas for housing opportunities," Booi added.

Cape Argus