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More Bo-Kaap sites expected to receive national heritage status

The Heritage Resource Agency's Ben Mwasinga said the next phase would see other Bo-Kaap areas considered for heritage protection, including homes and streets after 19 areas in Bo-Kaap were declared heritage sites.

FILE: One of Cape Town's oldest suburbs, Bo-Kaap. Picture: EWN

CAPE TOWN - Many more sites in the Bo-Kaap could eventually enjoy national heritage status but it's a lengthy process.

This week, Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa announced that 19 areas in Bo-Kaap have been declared heritage sites.

It's taken years, though, to reach this point, and it’s something residents have been campaigning for to ensure the community is protected against high-rise developments.

The national heritage declaration came after the City of Cape Town included the area in a Heritage Protection Overlay Zone.

These steps will make it a lot harder for developers to get any proposed projects off the ground.

However, this does not mean an end to developments in the Bo-Kaap, but any alterations at the new heritage sites would now need to go through the Heritage Resource Agency first.

The agency's Ben Mwasinga said the next phase would see other Bo-Kaap areas considered for heritage protection, including homes and streets.

“The City of Cape Town identified 500 buildings of significance in the Bo-Kaap. So, this is literally the first step and phase 1. If I take an estimated guess, we could have 5 to 6 phases, depending on how many buildings we declare at each point in time.”

One of the new heritage sites is the Auwal Masjid, the oldest mosque in the country.

The sites that have been given national heritage status are:

Auwal Masjid,
Prayer Quarry,
Tana Baru Burial Ground,
Stables Site,
Strand Street Quarry,
Wash House Quarry,
Spolander House,
Schotsche Kloof Primary School,
St Paul’s Primary School,
Buitengracht Street Wall,
Vista High School,
Schotsche Kloof Homestead,
Stadzicht Homestead,
Nurul Islam Masjid,
Jamia Masjid,
Masjid Shafee,
Masjid Boorhanol Islam,
Nurul Huda Masjid,
Bo-Kaap Museum.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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