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Activists eye 3 CT military bases for low-income housing use

The organisations believe that repurposing Ysterplaat, Wingfield and Youngsfield can help alleviate Cape Town's affordable housing crisis.

An aerial view of the Ysterplaat Air Force Base in Cape Town. Picture: AFB Ysterplaat/Facebook

CAPE TOWN - Activists want three Cape Town military bases to be used for low-income housing.

Ndifuna Ukwazi, the Legal Resources Centre and the Development Action Group are among 31 organisations making the call.

They have submitted a proposal to the president, the National COVID-19 Command Council and various ministers.

The organisations believe that repurposing Ysterplaat, Wingfield and Youngsfield can help alleviate Cape Town's affordable housing crisis.

Ndifuna Ukwazi's Michael Clark said that the prevalence of land occupations during the COVID-19 lockdown showed that the need for land had reached breaking point.

"The housing crisis, the deep inequality in the spatial form in Cape Town, the existing inequalities that have been exacerbated under the COVID-19 pandemic."

Clark said that it was clear that the three military sites were vacant and under-utilised.

"We're calling for a meeting with the president and all other stakeholders so that we can discuss our proposal which clearly identifies how these sites can be released, what legal mechanisms can be used to develop these [sites]."

The organisation said that by releasing the military sites, national government could accommodate up to 67,000 low-income households.

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