Dump a ‘blight’ on scenic route


The City of Cape Town has provisionally appointed consulting engineers to oversee development of the Vissershok landfill site, calling on residents to have their say on the process.

However, the Durbanville Community Forum (DCF) feels the development of the landfill site is a threat to the area and a blight on a scenic route, which includes Vissershok Valley and Contermans-kloof, popular for cycling races.

Sub-councils, including Sub-council 7 in Durbanville, have heard the City wants to enter into a contract with Jeffares and Green for professional services to plot the development, maintenance and remediation of the site.

A 60-day public participation period will commence tomorrow, Friday April 1.

“We expect to serve the final report to council before the July 27 meeting,” said Mayco member for utility services, Ernest Sonnenberg.

The contract would run for the remainder of the landfill’s lifespan, estimated to be 10 to 12 years. A City statement said the estimated worth of the contract is R30 million for a period of 18 years.

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He said it’s part of the City’s responsibility to dispose of domestic waste in line with legislation and minimise the risk to the environment.

“The consulting engineers will also be involved with various processes which includes the shaping, sealing, top soiling and re-vegetation of waste disposal cells,” he said.

DCF chairperson Danny St Dare said the expansion of this site poses a threat to the area.

“The site now dominates nearly the entire Vissershok Valley, Vissers-hok and Contermanskloof roads which have both been declared scenic routes. This is also detrimental to the historic Vissershok Farm, which has this ever-rising and expanding pile of waste and rubbish in its full view,” said Mr St Dare.

Mr Sonnenberg said: “There is about 40 hectares of licensed footprint which has not yet been developed and the primary purpose of the consulting engineers is to undertake the design and construction supervision of the remainder of the site.”

Mr St Dare said the City and the site’s management have failed to “green” the east-facing slopes of the site.

“Increasing the height seems to be an irresponsible action under the circumstances and once again the greater society will have to carry the burden. The bluegum trees that were planted years ago to screen the site are now totally ineffective,” he said.

Mr Sonnenberg said the City plans to develop Vissershok landfill site “to its full capacity”; the fully developed portion of the site and the south eastern embankment had all been landscaped.

“The application to increase the maximum permissible height of the site followed due process which included the input of a visual specialist who took into account the visual impact of the proposed heightening,” Mr Sonnenberg said.

According to Mr St Dare, the site has been a nuisance to the Morningstar community for several years.

“This is also likely to increase as the site progresses northwards,” he said.

Mr Sonnenberg, however, said they have not received any complaints from Morningstar residents in the last two audits.

“All and any complaints are recorded in the site complaints register, and the site manager follows up by checking if the complaint/nuisance emanates from our site. He responds by informing the complainant of the outcome,” he said.

The City’s Bid Adjudication Committee (BAC) has the delegated authority to award for contracts of up to three years in duration. “For contracts longer than three years, BAC makes a provisional award which is followed by a public participation process. After the inputs have been considered, a report is submitted to council for the final award,” said Mr Sonnenberg.

* The public participation process will run from Friday April 1 until Tuesday May 31. A copy of the draft contract should be available on the “Have Your Say” page of the City’s website by Friday, and at all sub-council offices and municipal libraries.