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Objection to the Proposed Development on the Kenilworth Racecourse Property

16 Jun 2017 Posted by in Environment, News and Events | 1 comment

Hi all you friends of NATURE, the LAW and The Environment.

Sorry about the late notice on this one, FoZR (Friends of Zeekoevlei and Rondevlei) are sending in an objection and hopefully some of you might do the same. Regarding the intervener status required (see below) do it if you can but if even if you can’t, object anyway and send us your name and email details please, we will be able to show support in this manner and hopefully piggy back your objection on our intervener status.

Please get involved

Please get involved

The Friends of Blaauwberg Nature Reserve are climbing into the fray as well at Kenilworth and I am hoping that some of you will join FOZR by appealing if you so wish.

HERE IS THE PROBLEM (there is always one). The appeal has to be submitted by the 17th June (Sat). However given that today is a public holiday and then it is Sat it would be prudent to send the appeal in today. 

A person who did not object to a development proposal does not qualify to appeal against the decision approving that development unless that person is granted “intervener status” (see attached extracts from the Municipal Planning By-law).  Since most of us did not know about the proposed development until it had been approved, we did not submit objections and consequently any appeals which you make will be rejected unless you are granted intervener status. (but submit anyway).

If you can and wish to make the effort…

In order to apply for that status before midnight on Saturday 17 June 2017 you must:

1.       complete the attached form; here is the link –  CCT Intervener Form (Section 89 Petition)

2.       depose to the affidavit before a commissioner of oaths (e.g. an attorney, at the police station and usually a post office);

3.       fax scan and email the form to Jean Roman at the City Manager’s Office in Town ( jean.roman@capetown.gov.za /  021 4002187) .

If you are not able to scan and  email the document I suggest that you call the City Manager’s office (021 400 1330 ) and ask if they can let you have a fax number or if you can deliver it on Saturday morning. (The general fax number on the website is 0860 103 090 ).

If others want to submit intervener application forms they are free to do so but send your names and email addresses to cormac@greencounsel.co.za so that he can add them to the list. Please also copy fozrchair@gmail.com (this will be used to show that FoZR have a mandate to appeal.)

The appeal must be submitted to:  appeals.southern@capetown.gov.za

If there are any queries please call me on my cell today (078 302 1337)

Below is the objection to submit.


 

Objection to the Proposed Development on the

Kenilworth Racecourse Property

Case No.:  70260102

rezoning, subdivision, departures, council’s approval and street names in terms of the Municipal Planning BY LAW, 2015: remainder ERF 65238CAPE TOWN at kenilworth, rosmead avenue, Kenilworth racecourse

Preamble:   

Kenilworth Racecourse Conservation Area (KRCA) is an area of 52 ha situated in the centre of Kenilworth Racecourse.

The KRCA is regarded as one of the last and the best examples of Cape Sand Fynbos remaining on the Cape Peninsula. Some 300+ indigenous plant species have been identified of which 34 are listed as Red Data species .  Furthermore, 13 different amphibian species occur in the Conservation Area, of which 2 are Critically Endangered (Micro Frog Microbatrachella capensis and Cape Platanna Xenopus gilli) and the third (Cape Rain Frog Breviceps gibbosus) is listed as Vulnerable.

No other single urban natural vegetation remnant in any country comes close in terms of sheer plant species numbers, relative to physical area.

Thus on International, National and Regional scale Cape Sand Plain Fynbos is of the highest conservation significance.

Legislation relevant to the Kenilworth Racecourse Conservation Area:

  • Constitution of the Republic of South Africa (Act 108 of 1996)
  • National Environment Management Act (Act 107 of 1998)
  • Environment Conservation Act (Act 73 of 1989)
  • Atmospheric Pollution Prevention Act (Act 45 of 1965)
  • National Forests Act (Act 84 of 1998)
  • Forest Act (Act 122 of 1984)
  • National Water Act (Act 36 of 1998)
  • National Veld and Forest Fire Act (Act 101 of 1998)

Fill in your name here wishes to table an appeal against the decision taken by the City of Cape Town Planning Tribunal on the 19th April 2017 (Case 70260102).

The following objections are raised in this appeal:

 

OBJECTION 1 – An Inadequate Public Process

An inadequate public process was followed. Whist this is also due to no IEM (Integrated Environmental Management) process being followed, it would have never the less been expected that given a development of this magnitude in such a sensitive area that a minimum of public involvement would have been conducted.

The lack of public involved is illustrated for example in the Kenilworth Environmental Advisory Committee (EAC). This is a statutory body formed by the 1999 Record of Decision that authorised earlier development at Kenilworth. Kenilworth Racing, the owner of the property, is also represented on this body and yet this mandated body was unaware of the development. This illustrates the gross lack of public awareness that has taken place. The City of Cape Town, knowing Kenilworth’s natural open space value and the conditions of the 1999 Record of Decision (ROD), should have insisted on a robust public process.

Indeed the rezoning conditions imposed by the City of Cape Town upon Kenilworth in its 1999 resolution were:

“2.2.3.1 The Council shall request full IEM procedures to be followed for any future development proposal on the property.”

The City of Cape Town has failed to uphold its own rezoning conditions which require full IEM procedures to be followed for any future development at Kenilworth.

 

OBJECTION 2 – No Environmental Impact Assessment has been carried out

As illustrated in objection 1 above, the City’s rezoning conditions demand that an EIA is conducted for this proposed develoipment. Further to this it is also demanded by the National Legislation.

Notice 327 of the National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998) states in Section 28:

IDENTIFIED ACTIVITIES AND COMPETENT AUTHORITIES

“3. (1) THE ACTIVITIES LISTED IN Appendix 1 are identified in terms of section 24 (2) (a) of the Act as activities that may not commence without an environmental authorisation from the competent authority. “

“APPENDIX  1”

“Section 28

Residential, mixed, retail, commercial, industrial or institutional developments where such land was used for agriculture, game farming, equestrian purposes or afforestation on or after 01 April 1998 and where such development:

(i) will occur inside an urban area, where the total land to be developed is bigger than 5 hectares; or

(ii) will occur outside and urban area, where the total land to be developed is bigger than 1 hectare;

Excluding where such land has already been developed for residential, mixed, retail, commercial, industrial or institutional purposes. “

(Note: the proposed development is 6.8 ha) .

For both of these listed reasons the City of Cape Town has erred and must demand an EIA is undertaken for this proposed development.

 

OBJECTION 3  – No specialist studies have been undertaklen.

Given the known international buiodiversity importance of Kenilworth, the City has not called for any specialist studies to guide this proposed development in such a sensitive environment.The area proposed for development forms part of the City of Cape Town’s Biodiversity Network.  The decision not to call for any specialist studies undermines the integrity of the City’s Biodiversity Network.

By not calling for any specialist studies the City of Cape Town is also acting against its own resolution with respect to Kenilworth which it determined in its 1999 rezoing conditions. This is quoted below:

“2.2.3Excluding the area of the existing race tracks and except where approved development has occurred to date, no development or any other activities which may have a detrimental effect on the environment may occur within any of the identified Protected Open Space areas (Annexure B) except in accordance with agreed development or activities resulting from Integrated Environmental Management Activities (IEM) procedures. “

In summary of this objection.

  • IEM procedures have not been followed.  No specialist studies have been undertaken that fully illustrate the potential impacts of the proposed development.
  • No public participation process as outlined in the IEM procedures has been undertaken.
  • No specialist studies to inform the development footprint of cumulative and edge effects with regards wetland ecology, flora management aspect (such as fire regime), fauna management, hydrology, noise & light impact studies have not been done.

 

OBJECTION 4 – Failure to comply with development approval conditions of 1999

The development conditions laid down by the Provincial Authorities that authorised earlier developments have not been complied with. These conditions are detailed in document AN 346/25/4 Kenilworth Racecourse. Of particular reference are conditions 2 & 3 listed which are below:

Condition 2

The “Areas requiring Conservation” indictaed on the map attached to a letter provided by Mr Doug Jeffery to this Department, dated 2nd march 1998, shall be surveyed. This area shall retain its zoning of Community Facility. The quarantine station site must be clearly distinguished from Precinct 4 and should also retain the zoning of Community Facility.

Condition 3

Before any site preparation or construction commences the applicant shall provide written documentation to this Department to show that the following matters have been finalised:

-       The future management of the Conservation Area,

-       The ownership/trusteeship of the Conservation Area. “

These conditions listed above have not been complied with at Kenilworth. This despite the fact that they are listed as being necessary for the start of any construction work in 199 is indicative of the level of neglect in enforcing the applicable conditions of approval.

The City of Cape Town is called upon to set aside its Tribunal ruling of the 19 April 20176 with regards Case No.:  70260102 and ensure that these exisintg legislative requirements are comlied with before any developemtn at this site can be contemplated.

It is imperative that a full and comprehensive Environmental Impact Assessment be carried out and an Environmental Management Pan be put in place.

We therefore strongly Object to this development approval and insist that all proposed development be halted until previous environmental conditions are complied to.

Following this comprehensive Integrated Environmental Management Procedures need to complied with at this site.

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  1. Jimmy06-16-17

    wELL DONE AND i’LL TRY TO COMPLETE AND EMAIL BEFORE MIDNIGHT TOMORROW.

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