Low-cost housing, so what?

So there are plans in the pipeline to put up low-cost houses in General Alberts Park? So what?

It’s not a new thing to Alberton at all. It’s an existing problem.

Alberton North and Florentia are packed full of ‘boarding houses’, with 60 people living on a single 900 square metre stand in each of them!

Take a drive up Pieter Uys Avenue or Susanna Road, where every second house is a ‘boarding house’. Most of these are owned by a father-and-son enterprise who are only in it for the money and don’t give a hoot about what they are doing to the area. Unfortunately South Africa has no law against maximum occupancy of a single stand of ground.

We bought next to one of these places and needless to say we are bitterly regretful. The only people interested in buying it are the aforementioned father and son. And they can name their price on our property because they know no-one else would be interested.

So we can either sell to them and lose a third of our life-savings in the process or we can put up with it.

It being loud music from Friday afternoon to Sunday night 10pm. It being drunk men urinating into the road from the pavement. It being the drunkards screaming and shouting. It being drugs being sold, next door to us, to schoolchildren. It being living in a kind of hell.

My point? This is the natural way of cities. It’s just urban expansion. The poor areas keep getting poorer and in time become the industrial areas. Don’t fight it. You can’t. All you can do is move away if you can afford to do so.


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Russel Eglington

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