The 2012/13 financial year saw the “ward allocation” budget being increased from R500 000 per year to R700 000. The “ward allocation” budget refers to funds available to be spent within each ward on projects identified by the ward councillor and approved by the sub-council. The increase in the budget is obviously very welcome.
Throughout the year we maintain a “wish list” of projects that either I identify as possible ward allocation projects or are submitted by residents and civic organisations operating within the ward. The wish list assists me and the ward committee to identify priority projects for funding.
The projects selected for 2012/13 include:
There is a rather long list of approved traffic calming measures for various streets within the ward. Given the very limited budget allocation for traffic calming the implementation of these limits will take a very long time if we rely exclusively on the Roads department’s budget. For this reason I allocated a substantial portion of the ward allocation budget to traffic calming – so that we can begin to eliminate some of this backlog – and the following projects were prioritised by the engineers for implementation:
Derry Street, Vredhoek
Hopkins Street, Woodstock
Chester Road, Walmer Estate
Cambridge Street, Walmer Estate
Fairview Street, Woodstock (if there is savings).
Parks – Upgrade and Maintenance:
In the dense and urban environment that makes up most of Ward 57 our public spaces are very important. We are blessed with a number of exceptional parks and it is important that we maintain them for our communities to use and enjoy.
I was particularly excited by the approach from two communities – Devils Peak and Gardens respectively – who wished to create decent parks out of two public open spaces within their neighbourhoods. I need to acknowledge and salute those involved for their initiative and for willing to be active participants in the upgrade of these spaces – without their energy and commitment creating two new parks would not have been possible. I was thus more than willing to respond to these initiatives and to support their efforts by allocating ward funding to the two projects:
The Plantation, Devils Peak
Maynard Street Childrens Park, Gardens
In addition, I allocated funding to:
Alma Road Park, Rosebank – for some TLC and to
Upper Searle Street Public Open Space, Walmer Estate – to provide fencing along the top of the retaining walls.
I have also funded park maintenance and attendants for:
Fairview Road Park, Woodstock
Shelley Street Park, Salt Rver
Observatory Beautification Project:
This project is based on an annual photographic event that takes place on Heritage Day. In 2011, working with the Lovell Gallery in Woodstock, we had dozens of amateur and professional photographers strolling around Woodstock snapping away for the theme “A Day in Woodstock”. The 20 best photographs were exhibited in the Gallery.
In 2012 the event expanded considerably and included a special category for school kids. With a camera on almost every cell phone the event was truly open to anyone and a “Day in Woodstock” ran alongside “A day in Observatory”. From the hundreds of photographs submitted a number of them will be used to “beautify” parts of the ward by way of an outdoor exhibition in Observatory and an outdoor art walk in Woodstock.
Senior Citizens Event:
We ended 2012 with a special festive season event for our special senior citizen residents. I decided to host the event at the Cape Town Stadium, and for most of the 120 guests this was the first time they had been inside our magnificent and iconic stadium. They enjoyed a wonderful lunch, live entertainment (including a lot of dancing – I had the blisters to prove it) and the exploring the stadium. Looking out over the pitch was a firm favourite.
Employability Skills Programme:
It is no secret that it is increasingly difficult for young South Africans to find employment, especially for those who have not had the opportunity to acquire post-schooling skills.
This ward project provides technical garment construction skills for 20 young, unemployed ward residents. At the end of the training learners will be able to construct garments – a skill they can use either in employment or to generate income from home.
Finally, we were able to fund a few extra street lights – in locations where residents had expressed concerns about their safety after dark:
Brickfield Road, Salt River
Corner Palmerston & Mountain Road, Woodstock
Corner Upper Mountain Road & Adelaide Street, Walmer Estate.