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Cape Town’s top artists to usher in holiday season at festive lights celebrationLast night I conducted a successful test switch-on of the festive lights on Adderley Street<span><figure class="figure-credits left"><img class="responsive" alt="placeholder" src="" style="width:511px;" /><figcaption> <p>  © City of Cape Town</p> </figcaption> </figure> <p>Last night I conducted a successful test switch-on of the festive lights on Adderley Street as we prepare to usher in the holiday season.</p><p>I was joined by top Cape Town talents, DJ Ready D, Heavenly Quartez, and members of The Rockets (who are celebrating their 50th anniversary).</p><p>These artists form part of an exciting line-up of entertainers set to wow Capetonians next month at the Cape’s biggest, free open-air event.</p><span>​<figure class="figure-credits right"><img class="responsive" alt="placeholder" src="" style="width:474px;" /><figcaption> <p>© City of Cape Town</p> </figcaption> </figure> <p>Each year thousands of Capetonians and visitors enjoy the celebration. This event is indeed a key example of how we are building an inclusive city as we come together to enjoy safe fun and the best in local entertainment.</p><p>The performers set to take the stage at the annual City of Cape Town festive lights switch-on from 16:00 on Sunday 3 December 2017 include:<br></p><ul><li><div style="text-align:left;">Baby Boy</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Paxton (Idols finalist)</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Soul Kulture   </div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Heavenly Quartez</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Koos Kombuis</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Vicky Sampson</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Craig Lucas (winner of The Voice South Africa)</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Jimmy Nevis</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Freshlyground</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">The Rockets and Friends (celebrating 50 years)</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">DJ Reddy D</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">MC: Joe Barber and Boeta Gamat</div></li></ul><p>The Grand Parade and surrounding streets will be energised by a shining line-up of fan favourite music acts, ahead of the eagerly awaited illumination moment at 20:30. The concert will end with a spectacular 3D video mapping display. As always, the first crossing in Adderley Street will carry a brand new light attraction that this year will spark the 2017 theme: Cape Town celebrates summer.</p><span>​<figure class="figure-credits left"><img class="responsive" alt="placeholder" src="" style="width:1142px;" /><figcaption> <p>© City of Cape Town</p> </figcaption> </figure></span></span></span>The festive lights switch-on is always a highlight on the city’s annual events calendar, as it is a wonderful family occasion for young and old to enjoy.  Attracting not only local residents, but visitors from afar, all are met with a warm and true Capetonian reception – something the city has now become known for around the world, as Cape Town celebrates its status as the ‘Events Capital of Africa.’<p>Rounding out the line-up will be the winners of the City’s Festive Lights Challenge music video competition, now in its second year. Chosen by Capetonians through an online public voting system on, the winning up-and-coming artist or band will perform at the festival on 3 December and also receive a fantastic cash prize of R10 000. Entrants need upload a performance video via the mobile app and share it to their social channels. The more votes the entrant gets, the higher their standing on the ‘buzz meter’. The artist with the most ‘buzz points’ will be crowned the winner. The Festive Lights Challenge is on until 28 November 2017.</p><p><br><strong>End</strong><br></p><span><span></span><p> </p>​​</span>2017-11-15T22:00:00Z1
City embarks on carbon neutral development journeyThe purpose of the C40 Reinventing Cities Programme is to transform underutilised urban sites into beacons of zero carbon emissions and resilient development. <p>The purpose of the C40 Reinventing Cities Programme is to transform underutilised urban sites into beacons of zero carbon emissions and resilient development. </p><p>Cape Town is a signatory to C40, a global network of large cities taking action to address climate change by developing and implementing policies and programmes that generate reductions in both greenhouse gas emissions and climate risks.</p><p>‘More than half of the world’s population lives in urban areas, with current projections indicating that this will increase to 70% by 2050. Cape Town is no exception. Our population has increased by 56% between 1996 and 2016. This trend is set to continue as we are facing the impacts of climate change – the current drought being a key example. Sustainable development and partnerships with the private sector and communities are no longer a choice, but a prerequisite, if we want to secure a future for our residents in times of limited resources,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Transport and Urban Development, Councillor Brett Herron.</p><p>The competition is open to the private sector who is encouraged to form multidisciplinary groups consisting of architects, urban planners and designers, developers, environmentalists, and representatives from the local community. </p><p>As part of a two-stage process, the teams must submit their expression of interest bid proposals for the development of the underutilised City-owned sites by 30 March 2018. Up to three teams will be shortlisted to participate in a second detailed proposal phase for each site, with the winning project for each site to be selected by December 2018.</p><p>Importantly, the process remains subject to all local laws and regulations pertaining to the fixed property – thus, all statutory processes will apply.</p><p>The following candidate sites form part of this competition:</p><ul><li><div style="text-align:left;">Ottery site – a 48 ha plot situated along Ottery and Old Strandfontein Roads in Ottery</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Mouquet Farm – a 2,4 ha open plot situated on the intersection of Old Kendal and Main Roads in Plumstead</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Bishop Lavis site – a 1,4 ha plot situated along Lenton Drive in the Bishop Lavis town centre</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">A section of the Grand Parade in the CBD – this section is located on the north-western edge of the Parade and is currently occupied by dilapidated trading stalls and related infrastructure </div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Civic Centre parking site – an open surface car park of approximately 1 ha, located adjacent to the Civic Centre in the Cape Town CBD</div></li></ul><p>The urban development proposals to be submitted must address the following, among others: </p><ul><li><div style="text-align:left;">Reduced energy demand</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Energy and resource efficiency</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Use of renewable energy, use of low-carbon energy</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Resilience and adaptation</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Green mobility</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Inclusionary approach and community benefit</div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">Innovative architecture and urban design</div></li></ul><p>‘Thus, the design proposals for each site should minimise the amount of energy a building uses for heating, cooling, hot water, lighting, ventilation, electrical services, and so forth. Choosing construction materials that minimise greenhouse gas emissions during manufacturing, transport and construction processes, but also through the lifetime of the building, are also important criteria,’ said Councillor Herron.</p><p>Managing waste is crucial, be it during or after construction. Discarded sources must be transformed into raw materials as far as possible. The design should ensure effective waste collection and separation, while construction waste must be limited. </p><p>‘Importantly, the design proposals must facilitate and encourage walking, cycling, the use of public transport and lift clubs, and at the same time discourage private vehicle use with only one occupant. We are all aware of the challenges we are facing in Cape Town with peak hour congestion and the consequences associated with it. By prioritising dense, transit-oriented growth and development along integration zones, we seek to create more inclusive communities with access to improved services, job opportunities, and affordable housing and public transport. Moreover, urban density can create the possibility for a better quality of life and a lower carbon footprint through more efficient infrastructure and planning,’ said Councillor Herron. </p><p>More information about the competition and the candidate sites from around the world is available on the C40 website at <a href=""></a></p><p><br><strong>End</strong></p>2017-11-15T22:00:00Z1
Learner firefighters ready to feel the heatThe City of Cape Town has acquired the services of 33 new permanent recruits, just in time for the busy summer season<span><p>​​​​​​The City of Cape Town has acquired the services of 33 new permanent recruits, just in time for the busy summer season.</p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:1034px;" /> </figure></span><span><p>The group comprising 30 male and 3 female learner firefighters graduated from the Epping Training Academy today, 16 November 2017.</p><p>They were awarded their badges and ranks by the Chief Fire Officer – the final step in a near one-year long journey that included a gruelling physical assessment, interviews, and an eight-month training course covering a number of modules like Firefighter 1, hazardous materials awareness, and Level 3 first-aid. </p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:980px;" /> </figure></span><span><p>The top students in the two trainee groups were Marcel Adriaanse and Esther Nieman, while Wade Mohamed and Luthando Mgqamakhwe were acknowledged as the most improved students in their respective groups. </p><p>‘This is a very proud day for the graduates and their families because firefighting is a calling that requires grit, determination and character. Many have tried to make the grade, but it’s not a career that everyone is cut out for. So I applaud the graduates for this achievement. The City is proud to welcome them into the fold and I am sure that they will be ambassadors to their employer in service to our residents,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security; and Social Services, Alderman JP Smith.</p><p>The graduates will be deployed to various fire stations around the city starting tomorrow, 17 November 2017. <br></p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:975px;" /> </figure></span><p>‘Odds are that the recruits will quite literally face a baptism of fire, as experience shows that there is a massive increase in the number of vegetation fires over the warmer months. I have no doubt that their time at the training academy has prepared them for this and that they will be assets to the City’s Fire and Rescue Service. For now though, they can bask in the joy of their achievement until the hard work starts,’ added Alderman Smith.</p><p>Further bolstering our capacity to fight fires is in line with the City’s Organisational Development and Transformation Plan goal to create safe communities. For more information on the City’s <a href="" target="_blank">fire readiness for the summer season</a>. </p><p><br><strong>End</strong><br></p><span>​​</span>2017-11-15T22:00:00Z1
City of Cape Town represented at 23rd Conference of the PartiesThe City’s efforts to reduce electricity consumption have already yielded significant results, with consumption decreasing steadily since 2009<p>​On 12 November 2017, the City of Cape Town joined other local and regional leaders from around the world to issue the ‘Bonn-Fiji Commitment of Local and Regional Leaders to Deliver the Paris Agreement at All Levels’. This pledge signals Cape Town’s joint commitment to reducing the impacts of climate change and working towards reducing carbon emissions. </p><p>The summit held in Bonn, Germany was attended by over 300 political leaders and more than 1 000 delegates. The Mayor of Bonn, Ashok Sridharan, opened the summit with the words, ‘Welcome to the age of sustainable development’.</p><p>The former governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and the current governor, Jerry Brown, gave keynote addresses at the summit.</p><p>‘Cities, states and regions hold tremendous power, especially when you work together,’ said Schwarzenegger. </p><p>The Bonn-Fiji commitment emphasises the ongoing commitment to keep global temperature rise to below two degrees Celsius.</p><p>The Chairperson of the City’s Committee on Sustainability and Resilience, Councillor Dave Bryant, attended the summit and also represented the City at COP23 and accompanying side events and workshops. This included a three-day workshop on the ongoing Cape Town-Munich partnership to promote sustainability initiatives in key sectors of local government. </p><p>‘The summit provided an opportunity for cities and regions across the world to share successes and challenges in reducing the impacts of climate change. There is widespread agreement that cities cannot wait any longer to implement mitigation measures. We must work together to urgently reduce our carbon emissions dramatically in order to avert widespread ecological disasters in the years to come,’ said Councillor Bryant. </p><p>This was the first COP where the United States (US) did not have a formal exhibition area. In lieu of this, the US Climate Action Centre was set up by non-federal government actors to ensure that the US had a presence. This included a keynote address earlier in the week by former American vice-president, Al Gore. The exhibition carried the slogan ‘we are still in’. Councillor Bryant visited the centre in a show of solidarity with the ongoing efforts of regular Americans towards climate action. </p><p>The City of Cape Town is a leader in Africa when it comes to reducing carbon emissions. The Energy 2040 programme aims to reduce dependency on coal and focus specifically on large-scale embedded rooftop solar generation. The City has also recently committed to divesting from fossil fuel initiatives in the future. </p><p>‘The City’s efforts to reduce electricity consumption have already yielded significant results, with consumption decreasing steadily since 2009. The Energy 2040 programme aims to reduce carbon emissions by 37% by 2040 through the roll-out of rooftop solar programmes and the implementation of further energy efficiency measures. As a member of the 100 Resilient Cities programme, we are proud of our efforts thus far and we remain committed to increasing our resilience going forward,’ said Councillor Bryant. </p><p>The programme to replace all City-owned public lighting with LED lighting has been a key contributor in reducing energy consumption. This has been coupled with the Smart Living campaign which educates members of the public around ways to reduce their own consumption. </p><p>Last year the City rolled out a pilot programme with thousands of free home-composting units delivered to homes across the city. </p><p>‘We would like to see a significant increase in the number of home-composting units going forward as home-composting reduces the levels emissions from landfill sites,’ said Councillor Bryant.  </p><p>The City is working to improve Cape Town’s public transport system, with a key aim to reduce travel distances, thereby also reducing emissions. Currently the transport sector contributes 64% of energy consumption and 34% of overall emissions.</p><p><br><strong>End</strong><br></p>2017-11-15T22:00:00Z1






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