Zandvlei Trust

Porter Estate / Buitenverwagting to Soetvlei 
inspection 19 August 2009. 
All photographs supplied by Fenshcen Otzen.

A group from WESSA, Constantia Hills Residents Association met with Chris Botes SANP on a very wet stormy winters day at the Stone Church off Orpen Road. The object to inspect and see first hand the impact runoff water from the mountain (TMNP and MOT) and through Porter Estate (Provincial land) and Buitenvervagting Wine Estate (Private land) is having on Soetvlei (City of Cape Town) the large wetland below Orpen Road which is bordered by Provinicial, TMNP and Private landowners. 

This collection of photos serve to demonstrate some of the complex issues of land use and management by the local authoritity landowners lack of interest and responsibility.

The parking area under the large gum trees at the Stone Church. The infestation of Polar trees in the wetland area is visible behind. They are without leaves in the middle of winter. This area is what appears to be a natural wetland area.

The raging runoff from Porter Estate following down the road on the Buintenverwagting Estate southern boundary.

The Buintenverwagting Estate southern boundary road.

The runoff water is loaded with silt and topsoils up the higher regions of the properties.

Water courses are starting to form through the poplar groves which then run down towards Orpen Road culverts. 

Silt and soils deposited in an area which should                 Orpen Road culverts. 
be operating as a wetland to slow down the water 
flow and extract the silts.                 

Orpen Road culverts cant cope and water is             Across the road at the Maths and Science Acadamy
flowing across the road into the top end of               where many, many tons of soil has been dumped by
Soetvlei.                                                               a contractor. This soil originated at the Virgin Active
                                                                           Fitness Centre
in Westlake Business Park.

Building rubble is included in this illegal dumping.    The dumped material is in the Soetvlei Wetland.

Detail of some exposed rubble.                              The group meeting on site.

There is some attempt to start removing the dumped soils. The Green Scorpions were called in to get the illegally dumped material removed from this wetland. This is Provincial land which the local groups have been trying for years to get removed.

Wash aways with sink ins are occuring and washing soils and silts directly into Soetvlei. These soils all land up in Zandvlei at the end of the catchment. Zandvlei is silting up very quickly on an annual basis.

                                                                                                                                              

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