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Public participation process on Bo-Kaap heritage protection to run until 22 Feb

Once the public participation process opens on 18 January, interested parties will be able to comment on the City of Cape Town's website, or do so by visiting one of the municipal offices in the CBD.

FILE: Bo-Kaap residents stand side by side as the protest to stop a crane from entering the area. Picture: Bertram Malgas/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Members of the public have until 22 February to comment on the City of Cape Town's plan to include Bo-Kaap in a Heritage Protection Overlay Zone.

The proposal will ensure property developers looking to build in Bo-Kaap first go through the city, where officials will consider the potential impact that a proposed development may have on the heritage of the area.

Residents of the historic neighbourhood have over the years been protesting against the building of high-rise developments in the area.

Some residents are still in a court battle with a property developer over the building of an apartment complex in Lion Street.

Once the public participation process opens on Friday (18 January), interested parties will be able to comment on the City of Cape Town's website, or do so by visiting one of the municipal offices in the CBD.

The city is also hosting an event on 9 February for community organisations and the business sector to make oral presentations about the plan to include Bo-Kaap in a Heritage Protection Overlay Zone.

The municipality says it aims to prevent "inappropriate development and alterations within an area of significant heritage value."

While the Bo-Kaap Ratepayers' Association has voiced its skepticism over this plan, which has been coming on since 2013, it has welcomed a move to declare the area a national heritage site.

Last month, Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa said a process is underway to make this happen.

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