Cape Town – There will be no traffic lights along sections of Prince George Drive, including the smash-and-grab hot spot at the intersection of Military Road, for the foreseeable future, the City says.
According to the City, the traffic signals at these intersections had been vandalised during a protest last month and since then it has been too dangerous for officials from the transport directorate to access the area to do repair work.
Vrygrond residents were protesting over land and service delivery.
Seawinds resident Jacky Newman expressed her concern about the non-functioning robots.
“I have called, logged service requests, but nothing is being done. Last Sunday an accident happened due to the robots being out.
“How many more accidents are needed for the City to finally fix these robots. Should someone die first?
“This intersection has pupils crossing daily and is really extremely busy,” Newman said.
She had not seen the robots being burnt during the protests.
“Even if that’s the reason it’s not good enough.
“We pay for these services as much as any other community and for the City to hold a whole community hostage for the
actions of a few scoundrels is pathetic.
“If the intention is to not fix it, what’s the plan? Stop signs placed at each robot are not sufficient. Traffic cops are not there to guide traffic. Build a circle, but do something. We need results, not punishment.”
Mayco member for transport, Felicity Purchase, said those involved in violent protests had threatened to destroy the signals again should the City attempt to conduct repairs.
“We are currently waiting for the situation to stabilise before we will be able to do the repairs - it is impossible to indicate a timeline at this stage.
“Once it is safe to do so, teams will need about 10 days to complete the repairs, starting with the intersection at Military Road.”
The estimated cost of the repair work was R800 000 and one of the intersections would require substantial cable replacement, she added.
The signal at Vrygrond had been vandalised three times over the past few months, she said.
Vrygrond Community Development Forum chair Mikel Khumalo said it was ironic that the City was blaming the community which it had failed to service or listen to.
“It is irresponsible for the City to say they are waiting for the place to stabilise when they are the reason why the community responded in that fashion.”
He said despite attending meetings that the City had set up outside the area, which community members had to find a way to attend, it had failed to engage on all of the issues raised.