Sunday, May 21, 2017

South Africa - Pretoria Property Owners Tug of War

Pretoria property owners win tug of war over city park

The homeowners association of an upmarket security estate in Waterkloof Ridge is embroiled in a bitter legal battle with the City of Tshwane regarding an eco-park adjacent to the estate which the city is now threatening to "put on tender to the highest bid".

The Waterkloof Boulevard Homeowners Association had registered a company called Waterkloof Ridge Nature Valley to manage and maintain the park for the past decade. It turned to the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria, in a bid to further secure the management of the park.

The association said it had over the past decade developed and maintained the park. Not only is it an attractive feature in the area, but it also provides security to all the adjacent properties as access to it is secured. Its lease agreement with the city had run out and it did everything by the book to try to secure a new lease agreement, but the city simply said the park was going to go on tender, said Pasqualino Lattuca, director of the association.

He asked the court to order the city to reconsider their application to renew its lease agreement. Judge Lettie Molopa-Sethosa granted the order and said the city had to make a decision within 30 days as to whether the association could continue managing the park.

Lattuca said the association entered into an agreement with the city in 2005 to lease the park - and had to inform the city three months in advance if it wanted to extend the deal. Lattuca said they did this, but heard nothing from the city. The lease agreement had meanwhile expired, but they continued taking care of the park. After not hearing from the city for more than a year the association was recently told its application to extend the lease was turned down. This, he said, was done without hearing the submissions from the association.
Lattuca said they had, at great expense and effort, ensured the park was properly taken care of but were now reluctant to develop it further in light of the city’s refusal to extend the lease.

Zelda Venter
Pretoria News

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