Western Cape Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  17 Nov 2011

DEVELOPMENT: Cape Town's CBD Resilient


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The Central City Improvement District’s 11th Annual General Meeting yesterday highlighted the importance of consistency, creativity and partnerships in addressing urban challenges within a recessionary climate.

In his introduction, CCID Chief Operating Officer Tasso Evangelinos acknowledged that the CCID had entered a sobering second decade.

Last year we celebrated our tenth anniversary amidst the excitement of the World Cup. The build-up to the World Cup sheltered Cape Town from the effects of the recession, and the full impact was really only felt after the event,’ he explained. ‘I foresee a few more lean years, but the CBD is resilient and we will see this through.’

Chairperson Rob Kane commended the CCID for ensuring that the Cape Town CBD remains one of the most well managed in the country. ‘The simple truth of the CCID’s success lies in the fact that we stick to our well-defined mandate and deliver a consistent performance and attention to detail that results in  a city centre that is open for business,’ he said.

Noting the consistent performance of his security, urban management and social development teams in keeping the Cape Town CBD clean, safe, and caring, Evangelinos added: ‘The CCID has distinguished itself by applying creative thinking to solve challenges. It’s been a tough cycle. Year on year we’ve had to come up with more and more creative solutions to deliver on our mandate. We’ve had to learn to adapt.’

Key achievements for the year include a response time of less than 5 minutes for security callouts, more than 1 500 tons of waste removed from CBD streets (in addition to that collected by City services), over 1 300 storm water drains cleared to keep the CBD flood-free, and 20% of collected waste being recycled, with a target of 70% now the goal. The CCID urban management programme has also expanded beyond the basics to focus on the finer details, and today includes beautification projects like tree pruning and planting, road maintenance and way-finding signage projects.

We have a world class city centre and we need world class public spaces and world class signage,’ said Rob Kane, commending the CCID for the quality and sophistication of their Urban Management projects.

The issue of chronic homelessness was identified as the greatest challenge currently facing the CBD. ‘The plight of the homeless and the influx of people living on the streets, many of them foreign nationals, is a very complex issue,’ explained Evangelinos. ‘Our social development team has been doing so much with so little.’

Through the efforts of CCID field workers, 112 children and 211 adults on the street have been assisted, with 108 people reunited with their families. The CCID also distributed 2 000 care bags and 500 pairs of men’s shoes through their Winter Readiness programme, and their partnership with Straatwerk provides a source of income for 300 people who would otherwise be destitute.

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