VRCID working to improve safety

Voortrekker Road Corridor Improvement District chief operations officer Derek Bock with Sam Pienaar and Phillip van Zijl.

With the year nearly done and dusted, the Voortrekker Road Corridor Improvement District (VRCID) has celebrated a few victories over the year while it is also preparing for a busy holiday season.

It is no secret that Bellville is one of the busiest areas in the city, and the VRCID is an organisation that provides 24/7 security for the Bellville and Parow CBDs with its reach also stretching to Durban Road on the N1.

Besides the expected increased activity that comes with the holiday season, the VRCID has added duties coming up shortly with the inaugural Urban Trail Run this weekend and the second annual Pop-Up Street Store in Voortrekker Road next weekend.

The Trail Run will host 650 people running or walking across Bellville’s open public areas, while the street store will give homeless people the chance to “shop” for new clothes.

VRCID chief operating officer Derek Bock believes the organisation is more than capable of handling the extra events as shown by the success they have enjoyed over the past year.

Mr Bock said: “Our highlight, this year has been the completion of the security operations centre (Soc), from where the VRCID monitors 67 closed circuit television and licence plate recognition cameras.

“This has enabled us to work more closely with SAPS and the City of Cape Town’s law enforcement agencies as they make use of this facility on a regular basis.”

He said he was pleased with the success of the many social development events held in the area over the past year.

“A further highlight has been the successes of our social development department. With NGOs such as MES, The Haven and Tygerberg Association for Street People (TASP), we have changed the lives of many destitute people on the streets.

“A low point for me is the continuing littering by members of the public. It boggles the mind that we still get businesses and the public who think that littering is someone else’s problem.”

Currently in its sixth year of operation, the VRCID hoped to add more highlights in the future said Mr Bock, stressing the importance of having support from the City of Cape Town and the police.

“As per our mandate, we need to deliver over and above services which the City and SAPS must deliver.

“This is a very important thing to remember – the public must hold SAPS and the City accountable for delivering services.”

The organisation also had a responsibility to its levy payers, said Mr Bock.

“Within the VRCID, all commercially owned properties must pay the CID
levy to the City which then pays it over to the VRCID. All such documentation is available on our website and is open to public scrutiny.”