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MEDIA STATEMENT: George Municipality clarifies position on social housing

Issued George Municipality, 3 September 2022

Following recent reports in the media regarding the Garden Route District Municipality’s Social Housing delivery partnership, George Municipality would like to clarify that the Executive Mayor of George, Leon Van Wyk wrote to the Mayor of GRDM and the Western Cape MEC for Human Settlements, in advance of a summit hosted on Monday 29 August which was due to visit a number of sites/erven apparently identified by the GRDM as potential social housing sites.

The letters contained concerns raised by George Municipality that the actions of GRDM in hosting such a summit are premature and run the risk of raising unrealistic expectations amongst potential beneficiaries, the public and potential housing partners, in particular where the properties identified may not be suitable for development.

The municipality is in the process of developing a pipeline of social housing projects to accommodate the approximately 1700 persons listed on the social housing database, which will follow the required planning and environmental assessments including thorough Public Participation processes.

George Council has by resolution identified strategically positioned, valuable land which it owns, such as the highly sought-after crocodile farm site, as well as other sites throughout the city which are suited to use for social housing. The George Municipality’s focus for social housing is on bringing people into the city, densifying to ensure less infrastructure costs, making sure they are on transport corridors and to have easy, walking access to all amenities.

George Municipality is the final decision maker concerning all land development applications within its jurisdiction and as such must maintain objectivity and promote the sound planning principles and policy contained in our Municipal Spatial Development Framework in a holistic and sustainable manner and will not be swayed by political grandstanding.

Issued by George Municipal Communications Department
Office of the Municipal Manager