Premier Winde and Minister Simmers conduct an infrastructure oversight visit
Yesterday, Western Cape Premier Alan Winde and Provincial Minister of Infrastructure Tertuis Simmers, conducted an oversight visit and hand-delivered title deeds to senior residents of the Vredebes Housing Project.
As South Africa continues to commemorate public service month, the day’s proceedings began with a walkabout and inspection of the construction at the Van Brede Bridge over the Dwars River, on Voortrekker road in Ceres. The construction at this site will see the widening of the existing reinforced concrete piers and the construction of new reinforced concrete barriers, to allow for cyclists and pedestrians, as some of the associated upgrading items. The project commenced in December 2021 and is scheduled to be completed in December 2023 at a budget of R66 million. The Premier lauded those involved in the project for thinking into the future with infrastructure development projects such as this. "We must constantly think ahead as our province's population grows,” he said.
The next stop on the itinerary was a door-to-door hand delivery of title deeds by the Premier and Minister Simmers, at the Vredebes housing project. This project has seen nearly 230 top structures built, with 1756 serviced sites. Title deed recipient, Ms. Katriena Sass, said: “I am delighted to have this title deed which will allow me to leave a legacy behind for my grandchildren. I would like to thank the Premier and the Minister as well as the Witzenberg Municipality for their efforts.”
Premier Winde said: “We are not just handing over title deeds; we are giving these senior citizens hope and dignity. These homes are now officially theirs, and my hope is that they will make a positive change in their lives, and the lives of their children into the future."
The oversight visit was concluded with the showcasing of the new housing offering, the Incremental Housing pilot project. This pilot showhouse is a product intended for beneficiaries who may not qualify for a standard Breaking New Ground (BNG) unit or existing government subsidy schemes. It is a model of delivery that leads to secure tenure which could include ownership and is one of the Western Cape Government’s interventions to upgrade informal settlements in an integrated manner. This offers an individual the opportunity to build and expand on a formal structure that is provided by the department. “The Ceres Vredebes incremental housing project offers beneficiaries so much more: they can build onto the precast units, adding value to their assets. They can also start small businesses from their homes generating economic activity and jobs in their community" said the Premier.
Minister Simmers remarked on the day’s proceedings: “We are thrilled at the progress of the Van Brede bridge which will allow for a lot more mobility and accommodation of all road users in the safest way. It was once again an honor to see the smiles on the faces of the title deed beneficiaries. The Incremental Housing pilot project is another innovative initiative of the Western Cape Government as we seek to restore the dignity of all citizens in this province. This project will enable beneficiaries to build their own homes and expedite the improvement of the quality of life of informal settlement dwellers.”
The Incremental Housing project site already has 500 serviced sites and has been approved by the National Housing Builders Registration Council (NHBRC). It is envisaged that Incremental Housing can assist with a delivery of between 10 000 to 20 000 units each year, a thorough delivery of housing opportunities.
“Today we have seen the delivery of infrastructure in its entirety, through innovation. This will positively contribute to the building of our province and economy into the future, for the benefit of our residents,” concluded Simmers.