An application for the removal of title deed restrictions applicable to three properties at 63, 65 and 67 Dundalk Avenue corner Roscommon Road, has been lodged by the owner.
The removal of restrictions application is necessary to align the title deeds with the applied for zoning of the properties. It will facilitate the redevelopment of the erven in terms of the rezoning applied for in April this year. The attached notice indicates that the removal is necessary in that they ‘prohibit inter alia the sale of liquor’.
The rezoning proposes business purposes, shops, residential buildings, places of instruction, social halls, car sales lots, private parking areas, institutions, religious purposes, dwelling units, and ancillary and related uses, subject to development controls that include a height of 4 storeys, coverage of 70%, floor area ratio of 2.0 (ie 6 380m², with shops limited to 1 500m² and offices limited to 2 000m²), and a density of 200 dwellings per ha (ie 127 dwelling units). It would be a large expansion of the existing Tyrone Neighbourhood Node from the Tyrone high street (one of the few left in Joburg) around the corner into Dundalk Ave – primarily a residential street with some community related functions like the Post Office and Police Station. The application is not supported by any evidence that this development would not result in businesses in Tyrone Ave being negatively affected and the street over time decaying.
The owner of these properties is working with the same developer who has applied to develop 61 units on the Parkview Golf Course.
These 3 properties currently have rights to approx 850 m² of combined office rights (large scale home enterprise) including a medical practice in one house. It adjoins a fourth property which also has limited large scale home enterprise rights. The zoning restrictions require that the existing buildings are retained so the scale and look of the 4 properties in this strip remains residential. The properties are landscaped and all parking requirements are to be met on the property.
Parkview Precinct Plan
The PRA wholly supports the increased densification of the City as it is not sustainable for the City to continue to expand outwards. If and when the buildings on these properties are replaced, the Parkview Precinct Plan would support higher density residential accommodation at the density of 40 units per hectare – rather than more intensive business or commercial activity. In its current and possible future role, the properties on this strip are seen as a buffer and transition zone between the Tyrone neighbourhood node and nearby residential uses. The possible future higher density residential development, does not imply support for the 4 houses’ demolition. This would require a heritage demolition permit from the Provincial Heritage Authority – Gauteng (PHRAG) as the structures are over 60 years old – another public process that residents can participate in.
PRA’s response to the rezoning applicationv
The Parkview Residents Association (PRA) opposed the rezoning application on various grounds including its impact on the Tyrone neighbourhood node and the surrounding area, believing that in its current form, the proposed expansion of the Tyrone Neighbourhood Node will alter its character from a primarily local function, to one servicing a wider trading area. It will have significant impacts on traffic movements, parking, servicing and the like, to the detriment of the character and amenity of the neighbourhood. The application does not address critical aspects of heritage, traffic, infrastructural capacity and the expansion of restaurant and entertainment activity into an area adjacent to residential properties. (see attached objection letter).
PRA’s proposed response to the current title deeds application
The PRA will also object to the removal of restrictions, as the necessity for this is entirely dependent on the rezoning outcome. S41 of the By-law, 2016, only provides for the amendment, suspension, or removal of title conditions only under certain circumstances, the pertinent one in this case being where it would promote “the development of any area” ie the development proposed in terms of the future zoning. It does not support the proposed development so would not support the removal of restrictive conditions of title to facilitate such a development.
In our view, the decision on the rezoning should precede the removal of title deeds application.
In addition, the PRA is of the opinion that there is merit in having title deed restrictions, albeit in a modernised form, in addition to zoning conditions to protect the amenity of the neighbourhood. It does not support the blanket removal of title deeds.
Removing the restriction on the sale of liquor would result in retail outlets, restaurants or places of entertainment selling liquor on these properties and will have a very significant negative impact on the area.
It also seems premature to remove title deeds to allow for more than 1 dwelling – if the heritage approval for the demolition of these structures has not been granted.
While the PRA always seeks to represent all the suburb’s residents and business owners – it would encourage individual residents, if they have concerns or uncertainty about these proposals, to lodge objections whether you objected to the rezoning proposal or not. Only objectors have a right to speak at the Municipal Tribunal. Unfortunately, people often realise this too late. As Cllr Bridget Steer has said – if you don’t engage with this proposal – please don’t later complain about the consequences.
Should you wish to respond to the notice for public comment – the attached layout of a letter can be used. It is important to provide your name, address, and contact details, your locus standi or reason why your comment/objection is relevant, and your grounds for concern or objection. The above general comments/objections can be used to frame your own responses, but should preferably also deal with your own views.
The public has until 17 July 2019 to lodge any comments or objections to the City Council, and to the applicant. These can be sent by mail to Development Planning, PO Box 30733, Braamfontein, 2017, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org, and to the applicant’s agent GE Town Planning Consultancy CC, PO Box 787285, Sandton, 2146, or by email to email@example.com. The email option is preferable.