Traders struggle to stay afloat in flooded parking lot

Recent rains have caused flooding at the Shoprite Kuils River Centre parking lot, hurting business for traders who have stalls there.

Traders at a Kuils River shopping centre are losing money when it rains because of flooding in the parking lot where they have their stalls.

The traders claim slapdash engineering work by the City underneath the Shoprite Kuils River Centre – which is situated across the Kuils River – is to blame for the parking lot looking like a pond.

Roland Gideons says the rains in the past two weeks have cost him R1 000 a day because he has to move his stall when the water starts rising.

“The regular customers would choose Zevenwacht Mall and Pick ’n Pay because I’m not at the regular spot. Nobody has time to ask questions when it rains so they would rather go there,” Mr Gideons said.

Goosain Carr, who sells groceries, said: “The parking lot looks like a river when it rains. It floods so bad.”

Shoprite Kuils River Centre manager Johan Lourens said the parking lot belonged to the municipality.

Northern News sent the City questions on Friday morning May 28, but it failed to respond by time of publication, despite reminders on Monday May 31 and Tuesday June 1.

Mr Lourens said the flooding not only hurt the traders but also reduced foot traffic inside the mall.

He believes the City’s failure to clear drains ahead of the rainy season is to blame for the flooding.

“We’ve been sitting with this problem for eight years. They come and inspect the drains, but they don’t fix them.”

Issac Jenecke, secretary of One Org., a traders’ organisation, said: “We’ve complained many times to the City. It happens yearly. We’ve sent pictures, but they have not addressed the problem.”