Manenberg Upgrade Progress Update
Pre-consultations on the Manenberg Upgrade programme are underway between the Western Cape Government, City of Cape Town and our community partners.
The Manenberg Upgrade represents a massive public investment in the community and its surrounds, with a particular focus on the youth.
The aim is to use urban design to transform the community, creating opportunities for quality education, skills development, after-school and business activity.
The upgrade is based on the Violence Prevention through Urban Upgrading methodology, with the potential to enhance overall safety in a suburb so deeply impacted by gang violence.
The long-term vision - which the Province, City and our community partners have been working on since 2015 – is to create a Youth Lifestyle Campus in Manenberg.
The campus will span some 30 city blocks, including a network of education and after schools facilities, linked by safe promenades and upgraded lighting and infrastructure.
In support of this vision, the City is currently investing in various upgrades to public infrastructure in the community, including lighting, roads and parks.
Following the annual Community Action Plan (CAP) review earlier this year, the Province and our community partners agreed on the following priorities:
- The Schools Upgrade Programme, which includes 3 new primary schools, with state-of-the-art facilities. These 3 schools will follow a similar design format to the Silverstream and Red River Primary schools, which have already been completed in Manenberg.
- A School of Skills, a unique schooling model that provides young people with an alternative pathway into apprenticeships and jobs.
- A Request for Proposals to use all or part of the former hospital site on Duinefontein Road for Skills and Community development, to be issued by the Public Works Department this year.
- The new Klipfontein Regional Hospital, a 550 bed facility to service the broader area, including Manenberg, Hanover Park, Gugulethu, Nyanga and surrounding communities.
The Province is currently undergoing pre-consultations with community partners. This feedback will inform a draft proposal setting out detail on the site, timing and possible methods of delivery of this infrastructure within the provincial fiscal frameworks that apply.
That draft proposal, will then be subject to the various further legislated public participation processes governing each sector, enabling every member of the affected community to comment.
While this process is time consuming, we have committed to a consultative process and to work within the law with every sector involved, including the public participation that is required for each proposed step.
Schools Upgrade Programme
The Schools Upgrade Programme will definitely require that the current locations of some schools will need to change to accommodate the building of 3 new state-of-the-art primary schools.
A site is also required for the new School of Skills.
In some instances, the merging of existing primary schools will also be required.
The schools that will benefit from upgrading are known as “plankie” schools, which have existed for many years and are made of inappropriate building material that needs to be replaced.
There is no final plan in place for which schools will close or merge, or where the new schools could be built. The South African Schools Act requires formal public consultation to be held before any decisions of this nature can be taken.
The Province is only at pre-consultation stage, in order to gather feedback and knowledge that could inform a draft proposal.
Principals, as leaders in their school communities, have been consulted on an ongoing basis regarding the best educational interests of children.
Valuable feedback has been received from principals during this process already and is being taken into consideration by government.
We are receiving further feedback from our community partners through a steercom that acts as an interface between residents and government. Pre-consultations are also planned with School Governing Bodies in Manenberg to get their feedback.
These pre-consultations with relevant stakeholders will be done before any formal proposals are made, and before any formal public participation is initiated in terms of the South African Schools Act.
We can categorically state that no final decisions have been made regarding the closure or merger of any school.
Rumours to this effect are false, including the most recent rumour that Manenberg Primary would close at the end of this year. Similar rumours regarding any other school in Manenberg are also false.
All discussions are currently at pre-consultation phase only, in order to consider the input of not only Principals and SGBs, but the broader community as well.
Klipfontein Regional Hospital
The new Klipfontein Regional Hospital is intended to be a facility larger than even the Khayelitsha and Mitchells Plain district hospitals. This is in line with the projected healthcare demand for the broader Klipfontein area leading into the year 2030.
The new Regional facility is intended to act as a referral hospital for surrounding communities. It will relieve pressure on the Groote Schuur, Red Cross Children’s Hospital, Tygerberg and Somerset facilities, where patients are currently referred to for specialist services, and Mowbray Maternity, where complicated obstetric cases are referred.
A new Regional Hospital in Klipfontein will also relieve pressure from the Khayelitsha and Mitchells Plain district facilities, which are experiencing high demand for beds.
An ambulance base and emergency unit will also form part of the new Klipfontein Regional Hospital. In short, the locating of this facility within Manenberg will be a massive asset to the community and surrounds.
Due to the scale of this facility, no less than 7 hectares of land is required. There are also special requirements for the site of such a facility, such as access routes from major road arteries.
Within the context of the limited availability of suitable land within Manenberg, the Western Cape Government has identified a potential site that could meet the requirements for a new Regional Hospital and ambulance base.
The site, on the corner of Duinefontein and Turfhall roads, is currently occupied by the Sonderend Primary School and Silverstream High School.
It must be emphasised that no decision can or has been taken on the future of either of these schools, without undergoing a public consultation process governed by the South African Schools Act.
That process has not been initiated as yet and our officials in Education are still in a pre- consultative phase in order to garner the opinions, views and facts relevant to informing any plan for an upgrade proposal of this magnitude.
Once this phase is complete and a proposal is prepared, the consultation process set out in the Act will be initiated.
In that process the School Governing Bodies, educators, staff, parents and broader school communities must, by law, be formally consulted and will again have an opportunity to comment on the proposal being made.
In accordance with the National Health Act of 2002, further consultation will be held with the Health Statutory bodies in the Klipfontein area, inclusive of Facility Boards, active health committees along with the District Health Council.
The Province will continue with pre-consultations, together with our community partners and roleplayers.
Once sufficient feedback has been received through pre-consultations, a draft proposal will be subjected to further public consultation.
Any formal public consultation in terms of the South African Schools Act will follow all prescripts of this legislation, and will be clearly and timeously communicated to the relevant schools, their principals, teachers, SGB’s and broader school communities.
The Request for Proposals on the skills and community use of all or part of the old hospital site will also be finalised and released for public input in due course.
Together with our community partners, broader forums around the Community Action Plan and overall Manenberg Upgrade programme will be held.
The Manenberg Upgrade represents a once in a generation opportunity to transform a gang-impacted community into a safer space, complete with opportunities for quality education, skills development, healthcare and the freedom of residents to live lives they value.
This is a vision we hope to realise together with our community partners.