Struisbaai backyard dwellers receive good news from Minister Simmers
On Wednesday evening, the Provincial Minister of Infrastructure Tertuis Simmers convened a public meeting with the community of Struisbaai, in Cape Agulhas Municipality and delivered some much-needed good news.
The community members and backyard dwellers of Struisbaai were in full attendance as the Minister delivered the plans of his portfolio through the Human Settlements composition. The public meeting was arranged as a community request, through the Mayor’s office to meet with the Minister. Some of the community’s concerns included the clarity around the department’s beneficiary selection criteria. The Struisbaai community covers 10% of Cape Agulhas Municipality’s housing demand database.
The Minister announced that the area known as Site-B (Oukamp) will be converted into a Mixed-used Development Project, this will comprise Breaking New Ground (BNG), Help Me Buy a Home (FLISP) and Serviced site housing options. He added that the department, has received a Project Initiation Document (PID) from the Municipality in July 2022. The PID has subsequently been provisionally approved, subject to the finalization of outstanding internal procedural items. This means the project will be accommodated in the November budget adjustment by Minister Simmers and allow for the project to be expedited.
The Minister pleaded with the community to play their part and protect the land earmarked for development. He requested the community not to invade nor allow any similar acts to happen on this land as this will be to the detriment of not only the project but the community of Struisbaai at large.
Minister Simmers said; “this was a productive public meeting, as it allowed for the two spheres of government and the community to engage, debate and clarify areas where they may have been misunderstanding. This community has a 43% population that is above 35 years of age and it is likely that the majority do not qualify for a BNG subsidy. It is for this reason, the project that will be constructed in the form of a Mixed-use Development. I will return before the end of the year to announce the budget allocation that will be made available for this project.”
The Department is expected to arrange a verification drive weekend in Struisbaai, in the coming months. This will assist the municipality with the updating and verification of the Housing Demand waiting list, to further determine the housing subsidy ratio required for this project.