Peoples Post Woodstock-Maitland Edition 15-03-2011

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Peoples Post Woodstock-Maitland Edition 15-03-2011

Transcript of Peoples Post Woodstock-Maitland Edition 15-03-2011

  • E-mail: post@peoplespost.co.za Tuesday 15 March 2011 Tel: 021 713 9440 Fax: 021 713 9481

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    Queens Park aburning issueTAURIQ HASSEN

    RESIDENTS are challengingthe City of Cape Towns R2million rand upgrade of theQueens Park recreational facili-ty, raising issues of access, secu-rity and suitability for childrenand dogs.

    They have called on the City toimprove certain aspects of the reno-vation of the sportsfield, childrensplay area and dog park.

    The sports precinct in UpperWoodstock materialised after thelong-standing Queens Park Swim-ming Pool was demolished when-several security concerns aroundthe pool were raised.

    In 2009 residents agreed to thedemolition of the ageing facility ata public meeting.

    The City has since introduced anew trim park, recreational playpark for children along with im-provements to the soccer field.

    Most notably, a new dog walkingfacility had been introduced at thesite of the pool. The facility is to in-clude green areas, benches andtrees, allowing for enough space fordogs to run about.

    Peoples Post reported that resi-dents were complaining that toomuch fencing had been erected inand around the facility (Too muchfencing, say residents, 22 Fe-burary). The green palisade fencingseparates different quadrants of thefacility.

    Residents felt the fencing onlycreated a sense of division for theusers of the park.

    Bridget Lloyd, a Woodstock resi-dent coordinating many of the com-plaints, has lodged these concernswith council and called for a bettermanagement system and better de-sign to be implemented at the site.

    What is happening now, is thatthere is a division at this publicopen space, along with several oth-er problems around the area, says

    Lloyd.Lloyd said it would see that the

    community would not be entitled tomake use of the soccer field, cur-rently being repaired, in the future.

    She said a few weeks ago someboys approached her, claiming thatthey were kicked off the field by theclub.

    This is supposed to be a publicopen space and you find this hap-pening, so something is not righthere, says Lloyd.

    She also said there were severalleaks on the field, caused by burstwater pipes, which is water wast-age.

    The large amount of fencing cre-ates a new safety concern for resi-dents using the facility, as there isonlya limitedamountof exit points,says Lloyd.

    This is a potential risk, as all ittakes is one person to block the exitand you are trapped and at the mer-cy of criminals, says Lloyd.

    Lloyd believes the current spaceallocated for the dog walking park,is way too small.

    It will soon become a territorialmatter among the dogs and theywill be fighting with each other, soin actual fact, they cannot be letloose in this park, says Lloyd.

    Lloyd says these are some of theconcerns streaming from the com-munity which need to be ad-dressed with council and residentsfrom the area.

    In order to strengthen their casewith council, Lloyd began a chainof emails, circulating all the con-cerns fromthe community.Approx-imately 27 residents joined in on theemail chain, supporting the issuesraised.

    She says several requests havebeen lodged with the ward council-lor to implement a formalisedFacility Management Committee,which is seriously needed.

    All we want is for the area to be-come more unified and to bring thiscommunity together, but with all

    these issues and now this fencing,we will not achieve that, Lloydsaid.

    Ward Councillor Cedric Thomasconfirmed that the field has beenleased out to the Queens Park Soc-cer Club, which is currently main-taining the facility.

    According to Thomas, all up-grades made to the area were com-municated to the public via subcouncil and ward forum meetings,as well as public meetings held bythe Upper Woodstock Residents As-sociation (UWRA)

    The organisation is mandated torepresent the residents of the com-munity and I worked throughthem, says Thomas.

    Thomas explained that he wasnot fully aware of the burst waterpipes causing leakages on the field,but the problem has already beenaddressed and is being monitoredby the club.

    Thomas added that the fencingwas part of the 2010 World CupProject which saw the upgrade tothe original fencing at the facility.

    The total amount of money thathas been invested in the QueensPark precinct over the last fiveyears has been around R2 million,says Thomas.

    He also made it clear that the topsection of the facility, which in-cludes the gym trim park, club-house and basketball court, wouldcover a significant area for childrento play, with adequate space for dogowners, providing they do not actin an anti-social manner and alsopick up their dogs faeces.

    Olivier Kleinhans, another con-cerned resident, has been using thepark for years for both her childrenand dogs.

    Although she has not encoun-tered any problems, she too has wit-nessed people being chased off thefield and dog owners being asked toleave.

    Its a beautiful facility, with themountain as your backdrop, so Idont understand why people arebeing asked to leave. We all thoughtthis was supposed to be a publicopen space, says Kleinhans.

    In response to the dog owners toleave the site, Thomasadded thatheis pushing for the new dog walkingsection to be completed later thismonth.

    It will have all the necessities in-stalled for dog lovers, which is thelast section to be completed in thisarea, Thomas confirmed.

    Thomas concluded by saying: Iwill continue to do the best of myability to work towards improvingthe lives of all who live in this wardand that includes our animals, asthey are part of our families andlives.

    Peoples Post attempted to gaincomment from the Upper Wood-stock Residents Association, butthey were unable to comment at thetime of going to print.

    AU NATUREL: Cape Town was one of 50 sites around the world to participate in a cheeky protest againstoil dependency and the car culture on Saturday March 12 by celebrating the bicycle and the power andindividuality of the human body. To symbolise the vulnerability of the cyclist in traffic, many cyclists weresemiclad as they rode down the Fan Walk in Green Point. Photo: Nasief Manie/Foto 24

  • Page 2 Peoples Post WoodstockMaitland GENERAL Tuesday 15 March 2011

    Horsepower doesnot come cheapTONY ROBINSON

    HAVE you noticed the motorcycles theCape Town traffic cops are riding thesedays? They are 1300 cc Hondas and theycost about R150 000 each.

    Now why do the traffic police need suchpowerful motorcycles when their opera-tions are confined to the municipal areawhere speed limits are between 60 and80 km/h? It is true that speed limits do goup to 120 km/h on the freeways, but that isnot where the work is.

    So what is the point of motorcycles thatcan race along at speeds in excess of200 km/h?

    For less than half the price, the city couldhave bought versatile 600 cc bikes by thesame manufacturer that are also capable ofexcessive speeds. That means they couldhave bought twice as many bikes or theycould have saved a lot of money.

    How much money? Well, it would take apensioner who lives in a modest home andpays about R500 a month in rates 16 yearsto pay the extra cost of a single superbike.

    Nodoubt the traffic departmentwill havetheir own story. They will probably explainabout the radios and other equipment theofficers have to carry, but thats all bun-kum radios have never been smaller orlighter than they are now and, anyway, thebike was designed to carry two. There is noway the equipment (whatever it is) couldbe heavier or less compact than a pillionpassenger.

    Anybody who has ever ridden a motorcy-cle (and I am one of them) will tell you thata 600 cc machine is more than powerfulenough for traffic work. In fact, the lightermachine is better suited for use in heavytraffic.

    Buying the big 1300 cc superbikes fortraffic cops is as extravagant as buyingBMWs and Jaguars for building inspectorsand social workers.

    Of course there was a time, under a previ-ous city administration, when the mountedtraffic officers disappeared and the new

    crop of officers tried to do the job in air-con-ditioned cars that cost even more than su-perbikes.

    Somehow it always took twocops todriveone car so this reduced the visible presenceon the roads and it reduced their effective-ness because it is darn difficult to threadan air-conditioned Camry through a trafficjam to reach the scene of an accident. Andonce there, the car becomes an extra obsta-cle.

    The mounted traffic officer, on the otherhand, can thread his/her way through traf-fic (even in gridlock conditions) to thescene of the accident to take charge and getthe traffic flowing again.

    So its good to see the bikes back, but whythe superbikes?

    We know that bigger bikes are nicer toysfor boys, but that should not be a considera-tion. We must think of the pensioner whohas to pay an extra 16 years wo