Heritage protection for Bo-Kaap gazetted

ANA - City of Cape Town

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The inclusion of the Bo-Kaap area in a heritage protection overlay zone (HPOZ) was published in the Western Cape Provincial Gazette on Friday 12 April 2019. Read more below:

All land units and public streets in the Bo-Kaap are now included in the HPOZ and as such have heritage protection.

‘From now on development applications for properties within the Bo-Kaap will be assessed more critically with an additional focus on the impact that the development proposal will have on the heritage value of the building and site and on the area. This is to prevent inappropriate development and alterations within the Bo-Kaap and also to provide clarity to property owners as to what is allowed and desirable.

‘The HPOZ also allows the City to impose conditions to the approval to ensure that the heritage value of the building or site is protected or enhanced. The City may also require the applicant to amend the plans,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Spatial Planning and Environment, Alderman Marian Nieuwoudt.

Apart from being the earliest established Muslim community in South Africa, the Bo-Kaap is also Cape Town’s oldest surviving residential neighbourhood with well-presented and coherent streetscapes.

The City Council approved the inclusion of the Bo-Kaap area in a heritage protection overlay zone on 28 March 2019.

‘From now on we’ll be able to conserve the unique historical landscape and heritage places in the Bo-Kaap by managing development in a sustainable and considered manner. It also allows us to protect the Bo-Kaap’s long-term sustainability as a cultural asset for future generations and visitors,’ said Alderman Nieuwoudt.

The HPOZ for the Bo-Kaap extends to the Table Mountain National Park and includes the northern green verges to the northwest of Strand Street, and includes Buitengracht between the intersections with Carisbrook and Strand Street.

The HPOZ has an impact on all of those who own property in the Bo-Kaap, in particular as it relates to new developments, restorations and the maintenance and alteration of properties.

Some of the HPOZ objectives are as follows:

· to conserve the Bo-Kaap heritage by encouraging owners to retain and rehabilitate the existing residential buildings

· to protect the streetscapes

· to ensure that new developments and alterations to existing buildings complement the historic urban landscape and that the area’s heritage is not negatively impacted on

· to promote and protect public open spaces and pedestrian movement along the roads and lanes; and

· to promote the cultural traditions and living heritage of the Bo-Kaap where people live outwardly on the stoeps and sidewalks

The HPOZ does not affect ownership or the rental of property, neither does it prevent new development.

‘However, the HPOZ sets additional development rules over and above the provisions of the base zoning for land units in the Bo-Kaap,’ said Alderman Nieuwoudt.

Importantly, applications that have been accepted by the City before 12 April 2019 will be processed and considered in terms of the legislation at the time of acceptance.

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