The Schubart Park buildings are yet to be revamped despite the former ANC City administration appointing a contractor for the job. Picture: Thobile Mathonsi/ANA
The Schubart Park buildings are yet to be revamped despite the former ANC City administration appointing a contractor for the job. Picture: Thobile Mathonsi/ANA

Schubart Park deadline missed

By RAPULA MOATSHE Time of article published Dec 27, 2017

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Pretoria - Former inhabitants of the Schubart Park complex could revolt against the City of Tshwane after it missed the November 2017 deadline to refurbish the buildings, the metro’s Economic Development and Spatial Planning oversight committee has warned.

The undertaking to renovate the precinct was made in April last year by the previous ANC administration. It followed a 2012 ruling by the Constitutional Court that the City refurbish the buildings and reinstate residents to their former homes.

The residents were evicted by the City in 2011 after it deemed the buildings to be uninhabitable.

Members of the oversight committee who conducted an inspection raised their concerns regarding the multi-million rand revamp project in a report submitted to council.

Read: 2017 a baptism of fire for city's first citizen

Former Schubart Park residents protest

They expressed worries that the project seemed to have stalled despite a tender having been awarded to a successful winner to renovate the historic buildings.

Committee chairperson Nkwane wa'Nkwane told the Pretoria News that the City had failed to renovate the building. “Five years since the the City of Tshwane forcibly evicted the residents of Schubart Park with a view to renovate it, nothing seems to have changed and there is a risk of more revolts by residents,” Nkwane said.

He said Tshoseletso Consortium was awarded a tender to renovate the buildings, but nothing had been done to date. “In terms of the agreement, the buildings renovations would have taken approximately 18 months."

Nkwane said the committee recommended that the tender awarded to Tsoseletso be revoked and the City procure another service service provider.

He said the revamping of Schubart Park was part of the West Capital development, a mixed-use residential development envisaged on the western outskirts of the CBD.

The City had planned to refurbish buildings in terms of designs that would adapt them into a modern-day mixed development precinct, including social housing and rental.

Schubart Park was built in the 1970s as part of a state subsidised rental scheme for the benefit of civil servants. It consists of four towers.

The blocks of flats boasted recreational facilities such as a swimming pool, tennis courts and community hall.

In July 1999, it was handed over to the City, which in September 2011 evacuated all residents, saying the complex had become dilapidated.

The residents then took the City to the Constitutional Court, which ordered the City to give residents alternative accommodation.

Nkwane said the City abided by the court ruling by providing alternative accommodation to the residents.

The City also paid for their rentals and was still paying to date, he said.

More than 500 residents have been living in temporary accommodation in Sunnyside and suburbs north of Pretoria.

According to Nkwane, the committee was not impressed that five years down the line, Schubart Park remained the same.

Pretoria News

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