South Africa

Tshwane mayor encourages residents to apply for Marabastad acommodation

During his site visit to the Marabastad Townlands social housing project recently, Tshwane mayor Cilliers Brink encouraged eligible residents to apply for accommodation during the project’s second phase.

The Marabastad Townlands is the largest social housing development in South Africa according to the metro.

Joined by partners at Housing Company Tshwane and other metro officials, the mayor made the rounds around the 1 200-unit multimillion-rand mixed-use complex and was pleased by the progress.

“What I saw here is very well-built, very well-maintained, pleasant and decent living conditions for working-class families and residents,” said Brink.

“With projects like these, we are reclaiming the inner city as so many people find themselves living in less-than-ideal situations and paying a lot of money to private landlords. This is decent, this is safe, it’s close to town and places of work and I think it’s such a wonderful opportunity,” he said.

“I spoke to some of the residents here and I’m also told that we are strict at this place, no noise, no trouble and that’s the way to make a place pleasant to live in.”

Phase 1 entailed filling the R1 500–R3 500 housing units with the 1 232 tenants who now live closer to economic opportunities that give them easier access to employment, public transport, shopping malls and sports facilities.

Phase 2 offers two-bedroom units to applicants with a gross household income of between R11 301 and R22 000 per month.

“If you earn between R11 300 and R22 000, the applications are opened.

“We don’t do online applications, we don’t use agents so be careful of scammers. Townlands and HCT don’t use agents,” he warned.

“The only way to apply is to head down to our offices on 310 Pretorius Street in CBD on the first floor of the SKG Tower (ABSA Building) between 09:00-15:00 where you will be assisted. There will be a credit check to see if you’re eligible.

“There are lots of units here, it’s a wonderful opportunity to move up in life,” he added.

“The bracket for lower-income earners is unfortunately full until we finish the other buildings in Phase 2,” said Tshwane MMC for Human Settlements, Ofentse Madzebatela.

Madzebatela cautioned interested residents to adhere to the rules of the townlands before applying.

“It’s very important that this doesn’t turn out to be a slum of a project, everyone that lives here must make sure that we take care of the environment. We have a good maintenance team here but it also requires the community to work with the maintenance team to ensure that this place is not vandalised,” he said.

The MMC said this was the reason why the metro was so thorough in its background checks as the city has invested too much in the project thus far.

Madazebatela said registration has been going well.

“The progress in the past few months has been good, that is why we are hopeful that we’ll get it done by April. We have had stoppages due to run-ins with the infamous construction mafias but we have gotten ahold of this and are sure that we will open on April 1. But what we are happy about is that while the team is constructing this place, we are still able to accommodate tenants,” he said.

The MMC also confirmed the metro looks to launch similar projects around Tshwane, starting with the current development in Chantelle, Pretoria North which will start admitting tenants in June.

HCT COO Mmasaphula Makwela said 448 units of the 1 200 to be made available have already been tenanted and despite setbacks, considers the project successful.

“The tenanting has been going slowly but surely, as we finish a block, we tenant it. There have been quite a few challenges as this was one of the projects that was hit hardest by Covid. It started in 2019 then obviously Covid hit, after that there was a lag to get some of the materials but also your usual community challenges here and there,” Makwela said.

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Applicants must meet the following criteria to be considered for placement in the project’s second phase:

  • must be 18 years of age or older
  • must be employed and/or self-employed, and be able to pay monthly rent
  • must be South African residents with a gross household income of between R11 301 and R22 000
  • must have clean credit records and not be under review

Documents required for applications include:

Certified ID copy

  • Certified copy of their partner’s ID, if applicable
  • Certified copies of birth certificates or IDs of dependents (children) or an affidavit if the dependent is an extended family member, if applicable
  • Proof of residence and proof of income
  • Latest three months’ pay slips (that of the applicant and partner, if applicable)

Three months’ bank statements or, if self-employed, six months’ bank statements and bank verification

Applications must bring all their required documents as no copies will be made at the office.

Applications must be submitted to HCT offices at SKG Tower Building (ABSA Building), 310 Pretorius Street, Pretoria CBD.

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