Two Rivers Urban Park Local Spatial Development Framework

The City is steamrolling a process to adopt a new Local Spatial Development Framework (LSDF) for the Two Rivers Urban Park (TRUP). This is very important as the proposed LSDF will provide for high-intensity development in the Liesbeek flood plain, pretty much changing the ‘rules’ so that the River Club will find it much easier to obtain rezoning needed to enable their development to proceed. The facts are as follows:

– The current LSDF earmarks the TRUP as a primary conservation area intended to be an Urban Park. The  Framework was signed off by both community members and city and provincial authorities were first adopted.

– The City initiated a co-design process to revise the LSDF, authorized by the previous executive mayor in 2015.  Phase I of the TRUP LSDF redesign ended in Feb 2017, with a process map that agreed that future planning for the precinct would engage stakeholders throughout the process of a Situation Analysis and development of a LSDF.

– Instead of this happening, the City has shelved the co-design, secretly brought in a number of consultants to write technical reports and have now presented this LSDF without any of the consultation envisaged.  In other words, they have gone from Phase I and leapfrogged over Phases II and III to go straight to Phase IV.

– Even the name of the precinct has been changed from Two River Urban Park to simply “Two Rivers”. This change of name took place without any consultation. The implication of removing “Urban Park” is that the planners do not want us to think about the precinct having any value as a park as was previously agreed.

– Consistent with City’s normal practice, stakeholders are given 60 days to comment on highly technical documents. The City continues to repeat the idea that what they are doing is the legally ‘prescribed’ process of consultation and, when asked, pretends to be unaware of the extensive co-design process they previously initiated.

Two Open Days were scheduled to engage the public over the LSDF. Because there was not enough time for presentations at the second event, a third Open Day took place at Oude Molen on the 27th November where community members (Mark Turok, TRUPA and Tauriq Jenkins, Goringhaicona Council) spoke. In the discussion, strong criticisms were directed at the City for its failure to recognize the rights of people living in Maitland Garden Village, the Khoi nation and local communities.  The City also declined to allow a Professor Environmental Sciences to share with the meeting findings of a recent study which showed how development in the flood plain was nonsensical from a policy perspective if the City is worried about water shortages in future since the wetlands in the floodplain are key to replenishing the aquifer.

The LSDF and the comments section is is available HERE.
The deadline for comments is Dec 17th.

We strongly urge members and OCA residents to let the City know how they feel about this LSDF. The OCA will be posting on our website and circulating a proforma response to the LSDF for use by residents and members, should you wish to object.  Comments and Objections should be submitted online at the URL above.

Given this is setting the rules for development in a highly sensitive, heritage-rich precinct, we call on members not to let this travesty proceed unchallenged!