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City celebrates Hartleyvale's sport heritage and its community benefits<span><p>Hartleyvale is regarded as a sporting precinct and its current sports fields are used for sporting codes, such as soccer, hockey and cricket at adjacent fields, which draw players from schools and clubs from across the city.<br> <br>These activities have been limited due to current restrictions, but are due to return with the expected further easing of lockdown levels in the coming months. <br> <br>While the maintenance of the fields was a challenge recently, with limits on irrigation and overplaying, which in turn necessitated a reduction in the number of playing hours, the fields are in a recovery stage, but these and club buildings are now being threatened by illegal activities seemingly supported by the Observatory Civic Association.</p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:1069px;" /> </figure></span><span><p>​​​​​​The land in contention is zoned as Public Open Space and the parcel forms part of the sports precinct and is zoned for sporting purposes. It is common knowledge that this land previously housed the South African National Circus School. Unfortunately, the previous lease holder sublet the clubhouse illegally to a number of individuals. This group has since grown and their activities have damaged the integrity of the land at this sporting space and has consequently impacted on the potential use of this space for years to come. <br> <br>It is located next to the Liesbeeck River and because it is situated within a floodplain it is not suitable for residential purposes, and it would be irresponsible of the City to condone the building of homes on this site.</p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:1069px;" /> </figure></span><span><p>The site was considered as an extension of the sports precinct, and possibly the development of the aquatic centre at the adjacent municipal pool. <br> <br>As it is, membership to sporting clubs had to be restricted due to limited space to exercise their sport therefore depriving communities from sporting activities and living healthy lifestyles.<br> <br>There is a need to extend the sports facility, which would not be possible if it is rezoned and repurposed. The realisation of this intended purpose is being hindered by the ongoing eviction process and the repeated refusal of the occupiers of the derelict clubhouse to take up alternative forms of accommodation offered to them. <br> <br>I acknowledge that there is a dire lack of housing opportunities, but we cannot sacrifice all open land for this need alone. All communities need open spaces, sports facilities, places of worship and green belts in keeping with the district spatial plans which has taken into consideration the needs as identified by the community. </p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:1069px;" /> </figure></span><p>The difficult task is to find ways to balance all of these requirements, without sacrificing existing facilities or constricting current sports and other activities. <br> <br>The site is of high ecological, cultural and heritage value and it is incumbent upon the City to build on this so that present and future generations may benefit.<br> <br>The city is committed to ongoing engagements with the occupiers at the facility to ensure that they have access to alternative accommodation and that the facility is integrated into the existing sporting space so that any future investments and expansions may benefit all communities from across the city. <br> </p><p><strong>End</strong><br> </p><span>​​</span><span>​​</span><span>​​</span>2020-08-11T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#0a5a1d9f-9ba4-4669-ae7a-14cd5cb3e774;L0|#00a5a1d9f-9ba4-4669-ae7a-14cd5cb3e774|stadium;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#2f5d75b3-f576-4285-9e21-de21bf0363d4;L0|#02f5d75b3-f576-4285-9e21-de21bf0363d4|Sports and recreation1

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