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Effects of Woodstock evictions still continue

■ Brett Herron, mayoral committee member for transport and urban development, addresses the protesters.

■ Brett Herron, mayoral committee member for transport and urban development, addresses the protesters.

Published Jul 21, 2017

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CAPE TOWN - People who were evicted over the past couple of years from Woodstock, say they are still struggling to deal with it.

Approximately 200 people were evicted from Woodstock and more are facing eviction.

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Leslie Stoffberg, 54, who lived in Woodstock all his life, said he had to break up his family after they were evicted from the area: "About three years ago when we were evicted from Page Lane by the owner, the church offered us space in containers on their site. There we stayed for about three years. A few days ago we moved out of the church.

“Currently I am staying in a room with my two kids at my sister's house and my wife, with our son, at her sister's house. The owner of the houses we stayed in paid for wendy house structures for all the other residents. We were the only ones who did not get even a wendy house. He promised me that he would provide me with a house I could stay in, but it never happened.

“A 92-year-old lady, Sylvia Carelse, died with a broken heart after we moved out of our houses in Page Lane. Months after they moved she still cried and said that she wanted to go home. They had to take her there regularly and show her that the houses were thrown down. It was very hard for her to leave the place where she grew up. I avoid going back to the site where the building used to stand.”

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At present, 150 people evicted from Gympie Street, Woodstock, about 10 years ago, are staying in Blikkiesdorp. Jared Rossouw from Ndifuna Ukwazi said that at their last community meeting about evictions, there were 150 people. Some were evictees and others face eviction.

On Tuesday, the City announced they will be building 956 houses in Woodstock and Salt River. The housing projects will be built in Dillon Lane and Pine Road in Woodstock. This will be social and affordable housing. The City has a housing waiting list of 320000 people.

Responding to questions of how much the housing developments are going to cost, mayoral committee member for transport and urban development Brett Herron said: “The outcome of the bidding process will determine the costs. The prospectus for the development of the five sites in the city centre, Woodstock and Salt River will be issued within the next two months. 

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The details of the sites, and all other information bidders may need in devising and submitting their proposals, will be presented in the prospectus. I will be able to provide time-frames and cost estimates once the bidding process is concluded.

[email protected]

Cape Argus

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