Concern over traffic congestion

Tom Blomefield, Helderberg

It has come to my attention, thanks to Bolander, that an application has been submitted to Cape Town municipality to rezone part of Helderberg College property to residential status.

This is being done for the building of a residential estate. As a homeowner that will be affected by this rezoning I strongly object to the impact it will have on the surrounding area.

The roads that lead to this area can be very busy at specific times of the day, mainly early morning, lunch period as schools close for the day, and late afternoon.

The building of an estate of approximately 50 houses will lead to a dramatic increase in traffic which will increase with the development of more residential complexes, which will follow.

There will also be an increase in traffic from the companies that will service this new residential area including domestic services. This will lead to an increase in the presence of taxis.

There is considerable traffic congestion at the intersection of Irene Avenue, Harewood Avenue and Arlington Road and also the Steynsrust bridge circle, particularly in the morning and afternoon periods.

There are apparently plans to build a circle at this intersection. There are also plans by Cape Town municipality to build an informal trading area in the open area bordering the Steynsrust bridge circle.

This will lead to even further traffic congestion.

I have been living at 24 Harewood Avenue for 32 years and have witnessed quite a few accidents in this road.

There are households with young children, and increased traffic will endanger their lives.

These roads, particularly Harewood Avenue which is lined with old oak trees on both sides, are not built for increased traffic loads.

These were originally farm roads and are relatively narrow and some sections are not in great condition.

The trees in Harewood Avenue are being broken by heavy vehicles that transports goods on this road.

These vehicles should not be allowed on this road.

The destruction of these trees will increase.

The Cape Town municipality refused the request of house owners for traffic humps to reduce the speed on Harewood Avenue.

Should the application be accepted by the municipality, speed humps will become a necessity on the flat and downhill sections, such as Companie Road.

Some of these roads have no pavements, or only partial pavements, so pedestrians have to walk in the roads.

This is not a problem when traffic is low but with the increase in traffic this will be unsafe and a plan will have to be implemented.

This proposed estate will be for upper market incomes and each household will have at least two large cars.

The Helderberg College land from the top of Helderspruit Road is prime farm land.

This land should be used for what it was intended, farming.

More and more agricultural land is being rezoned for residential development. We continually read and are informed that we will not be able to produce enough food to feed our future populations. We also read how the reduction of our fauna and flora is due to the destruction of our natural vegetation.

The rezoning of the Helderberg College property will definitely have an impact on the fauna observed in this area. The increase in traffic will lead to a decrease in the fauna.

Any rezoning of agricultural land to a residential state should be dependent on the property sizes being
a reflection of the neighbouring properties, that is ±1 900 to
2 000ha.

On the basis of these considerations I object very strongly to the rezoning and construction of an estate on Helderberg College property.