Flea market plan welcomed

Residents of Lotus River can have their say about a proposed plan to address unemployment in the ward.

Through several community meetings, Ward 65 councillor Patricia van der Ross found out from residents what the major concerns were in the area and unemployment was listed as one of the biggest issues along with gangsterism and safety.

“I was told by the community if our kids are employed they would have no reason to rob and steal. Then I started looking at ways that we could assist,” said Ms Van der Ross.

The flea market idea or Informal Trading Plan will give residents the opportunity to generate some income if they are unemployed and also provides a space for other residents to go shop.

She explained that the City of Cape Town’s Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) opportunities were limited by boundaries because of gang affiliation – some residents cannot go into certain areas because of this.

The trading plan across the ward will be in different spaces so that residents can sell goods like fruit, vegetables, clothing and other products to make an income.

“The ordinary resident will benefit from this. Should they want to get an extra income they can sell their products at the Lotus River flea market that will hopefully be up and running by summer and every weekend thereafter.

“This project will allow the residents of Lotus River to have their own flea market and this will not only empower the unemployed to have their own stalls and have an income, it will also decrease the criminal activity. Now we will have opportunities and this will then decrease the criminal activity. I want to urge all traders to come and give in their names and details at our office or email it to Patricia.VanDerRoss@capetown.gov.za

The plan is to have about 40 stalls that will be rotated among traders over weekends.

The areas earmarked for the flea market are on the corner of Fifth Avenue and Buck Road, on the corner of Fifth Avenue and Zeekoe Road, on the corner of Klip Road and De Wet Road, on the corner of Klip and De Wet Road, on the corner of Klip and Kiewiet Road and between Third Avenue and Fourth Avenue.

Lotus River resident Jennifer Adonis said if the plan should be passed it would be a positive for the community.

“Our youngsters are sitting at home with no jobs or goals and then gangsters take this as an opportunity to draw those youths in. This plan gives them and older people who are struggling to make money an opportunity to make their own money. It will also hopefully strengthen the community of Lotus River because at the moment there is a lot of division. I hope it gets passed” said Ms Adonis.

The plan is open for comment through a public participation process and will then go to the department of urban management and then full council for approval.

The plans will be available to view at the Sub-council 18 offices in Buck Road. You can also comment by going to www.capetown.gov.za/have your say.

For more information, call ward assistant Jillian Wilkinson on 021 400 6311.