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Woodstock developers urged to consider community's living heritage and memory

Heritage Western Cape has asked the developers of the WEX2 to conduct a social impact study that would determine whether the development can be approved.

Woodstock residents along with activists from lobby group Reclaim the City picketing on the Searle Street pedestrian bridge above the Nelson Mandela Boulevard on 11 July 2017. Picture: Monique Mortlock/EWN

CAPE TOWN - A proposed development in Woodstock will not go ahead until Heritage Western Cape gives the all-clear.

This is after housing lobby group Reclaim the City and developers Indigo Properties and Signatura made submissions to the provincial body on Wednesday.

Heritage Western Cape has asked the developers of the WEX2 (Indigo Properties and Signatura) to conduct a social impact study that will determine whether the development can be approved.

Reclaim the City said the proposed development was an exclusive apartment complex and Heritage Western Cape wanted developers to look at redesigning the building.

In their social impact assessment, Signatura and Indigo Properties also have to consider the area's living heritage and the memory of the community.

Activist Karen Hendricks, who has lived in Woodstock all her life, said the development must feature some form of inclusionary housing.

She warned that exclusive developments forced residents like her out of the area because they led to property price increases in land and rent prices.

“The developers did not take the concerns of the community of Woodstock into account with this WEX2 development. The social history of the community is under attack and there was no meaningful engagement between the developers and the community,” she said.

Eyewitness News has yet to receive a response to a request for comment from the developers.

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