Council Is Being Disingenuous Over Clairwood

The recent meeting of Clairwood residents (Mercury, March 23) at which they confronted Council officials with the plight of their suburb is the latest in a sad saga which has been ongoing for nearly 20 years.

The reported statement by senior Council official Shunnon Tulsiram that his task is to find a balance between economic growth and sustaining residential security is hardly convincing given the rampant industrial and logistics expansion which has been occurring in Clairwood.

The reality is that Clairwood’s fate was sealed on December 4, 2006 at a meeting held at the Fresh Produce Market in Flower Rd. There the then head of Town Planning, Soobs Moonsammy, in the presence of the then city manager, Dr Michael Sutcliffe, stated that market forces and not town planning considerations would determine Clairwood’s future.

Clairwood’s path to extinction was given a further boost when on November 13, 2014, at a meeting of the Economic Development Committee (Ecod), the following item was approved: “the rezoning of the Clairwood residential core for logistics” (p. 108 of the agenda).

The progressive decline of Clairwood as a residential suburb, which once had a population in excess of 40,000, is a reality which the ANC-led eThekwini Council has permitted and promoted. It is thus quite disingenuous for Council officials to claim otherwise.

Sent into The Mercury and published, 27 March 2017.

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