City of Cape Town acts on housing crisis
Cape Town - The City of Cape Town has purchased a 684-hectare piece of land near Somerset West in a bid to help solve the housing headache in the Mother City.
The City said in a statement that the Competition Tribunal had approved a transaction between the City of Cape Town and AECI Ltd on Wednesday.
The transaction dealt with the acquisition by the City of Cape Town of a 684-hectare piece of land at Paardevlei, Somerset West, for future urban development from AECI Ltd, an explosives and specialty chemicals group.
“This property is one of the last extensive, undeveloped pieces of land within the developed footprint of the City of Cape Town. This transaction is part of our commitment to meeting the needs of our expanding population,” Alderman Ian Neilson, Executive Deputy Mayor of the City of Cape Town said.
The purchase price was R400m (excluding VAT). In terms of the City of Cape Town’s Regional Spatial Development Framework, the area has been earmarked for mixed use development. Neilson said the finalisation of any plans, and any amendments to those plans would require a public participation process.
Before the City entered into the agreement with the sellers, Paardevlei Properties Limited, a subsidiary of AECI Ltd, a lengthy and considered process was carried out, including the requisite due diligence investigations. The land had become surplus to AECI Ltd’s operational requirements. The City ensured that there was strict compliance with all legislative requirements in order to effect this purchase.
“We are extremely pleased to have concluded this transaction, which was well supported by the AECI Board of Directors. We believe the City is the right buyer since it is best placed to develop the property strategically to the future benefit of Cape Town and its people,” said AECI’s Chief Executive, Mark Dytor.
This agreement would allow the City to meet many of its urban development obligations after a spate of housing service delivery protests in Cape Town, including protests along the N2 highway in February when protesters hurled stones at cars driving along the national road.
The City said it would communicate in due course its process and development objectives towards the planning and development of the area.