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City delivers arguments to the Concourt in the ‘Bromwell Street’ private eviction matter<p>​In 2017, the High Court granted an eviction order to a private owner of a Bromwell Street property. The occupants had demanded that the state provide temporary emergency housing in the specific areas of Salt River, Woodstock or the CBD, rejecting all offers of temporary emergency housing made by the City of Cape Town at the time. <br></p><div>The implication of this demand is that the state (in this case, the City) would have to provide emergency housing for any number of private evictions in the specific area of the eviction, and at the public’s cost. This is neither reasonable nor feasible. </div><div>The City’s policy is that social housing should be developed on the limited municipal owned available land in these central Cape Town areas. This land is therefore not earmarked for temporary emergency housing as the applicants demanded. </div><div> </div><div>‘Various municipal-owned properties in central Cape Town – with a yield of over 3 500 units - have already been released to social housing developers, including Pine Road, Dillon Lane, and Pickwick in Woodstock, Salt River Market, and the now tenanted Maitland Mews development. Several more properties are in the short to medium-term land release pipeline, including New Market Street, Woodstock Hospital and Earl Street, all in Woodstock, as well as Fruit & Veg in the CBD.</div><div> </div><div>‘In a February 2023 ruling, the SCA agreed with the City’s approach, stating that “the City was entitled to adapt its housing programme to address the effects of gentrification, among other challenges. It did so by identifying Woodstock, Salt River and the surrounds as areas to develop affordable social housing. It is not clear what could be objectionable about the City seeking to build affordable houses in the inner city as part of addressing the legacy of apartheid spatial planning”,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Human Settlements, Councillor Carl Pophaim. </div><div> </div><div>The SCA further cited Constitutional Court precedent that “the Constitution does not guarantee a person a right to housing at government expense at the locality of his or her choice”, and confirmed this would be an “impossible burden” on the State.</div><div> </div><div>It was also noted by the SCA that the applicants – represented by Ndifuna Ukwazi – had failed to provide “any legal basis set out in support of this constitutional attack [on the City’s housing programme] anywhere in the papers. Neither were the impugned portions of the Five-Year Plan identified, nor the relevant constitutional or statutory provisions infringed”.</div><div> </div><div>Once the Concourt has provided its direction, the City stands ready to determine the number of occupants remaining at Bromwell Street, including their socio-economic conditions, before further engagements on alternative emergency accommodation taking into account the currently available options.</div><div> </div><div><br></div><div><strong>End</strong></div><div><br></div><div>Note to broadcasters: an audio clip is available for download: <a href="https://bit.ly/4bTUgRK">https://bit.ly/4bTUgRK</a><br><br></div>2024-02-26T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#632815ae-33d6-4255-bae7-4783535a5604;L0|#0632815ae-33d6-4255-bae7-4783535a5604|BROMWELL;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#a4eccbe6-2bec-49aa-ad58-8ed41a372c82;L0|#0a4eccbe6-2bec-49aa-ad58-8ed41a372c82|housing;GP0|#22fb1098-55c5-41b5-bd95-2cb9f3827d28;L0|#022fb1098-55c5-41b5-bd95-2cb9f3827d28|Constitutional Court;GPP|#9b45657f-dbaa-45e2-9e01-431e7fe1bc94;GP0|#332b80ff-fa7b-4b63-aeff-5ec45b65fe4d;L0|#0332b80ff-fa7b-4b63-aeff-5ec45b65fe4d|eviction;GPP|#632815ae-33d6-4255-bae7-4783535a5604;GP0|#3ea72323-aacb-4ec5-b16a-f187107de423;L0|#03ea72323-aacb-4ec5-b16a-f187107de423|social housing10

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