Friday, July 14, 2006

The Squatters are not returning to district Six, says city

by Danika Marquis

At least two shacks have been spotted since Wednesday on prime land between the Cape Peninsula University of Technology and the Oriental Plaza. According to the Cape Argus, the city obtained a court order last year preventing squatters from building in district six, but according to the Central City Improvement District, this is to no avail. The City, however, denies the return of squatters, saying that they are aware that people shelter their overnight, but the shelters are removed by morning, so the temporary inhabitants are merely seen as vagrants. But CCID chief operations officer Derek Bock confirmed that the shacks are visible in the area during the day, stating that the city should not allow these illegal structures to remain. According to Bock, crime levels decreased significantly after the shacks were demolished last year. District Six has been cleared for a pilot housing project that is currently under construction; and new residents of the first pilot project are concerned about potential squatters, and the increase in crime that they may bring.

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