While the past year had been a testing one for business and commercial property owners in the Cape Town CBD, the inner-city economy was on the way to recovery and it was time to “move forward vigorously” to create a new normal in town, according to Rob Kane, chairperson of the Cape Town Central City Improvement District (CCID).
Speaking at the CCID’s AGM on Monday, where the organisation celebrated its 22nd consecutive clean audit, Kane said: “Covid-19 threw many curveballs at us, but we have emerged on the other side of the pandemic and there is a lot to be grateful for – more and more people are streaming into town to do business, to work, to live and to have a good time. Landlords are creating more people-friendly office environments and urban spaces, big events and conferences are back, tourism has picked up and we’re anticipating a bumper season, new buildings are being construction, old buildings are being renovated …”
Kane, who is the CEO of Boxwood Property Fund, said none of this would have been possible had the CBD not remained a vibrant, clean, safe, welcoming and risk-reduced urban environment during the past financial year.
“For that we have the CCID and its primary partners to thank. Playing to its strengths of having a commendable work ethic and an uncanny ability to swiftly adapt to circumstances on the ground, the CCID worked diligently and with a proactive attitude during the second year of the pandemic.”
DYNAMIC INNER CITY
The CCID is a public-private partnership which was established in 2020 by local property owners. It operates in a 1.6 km² area in the CBD and is mandated to provide complementary top-up services to those already provided by its primary partners, the City of Cape Town and SAPS.
Tasso Evangelinos, CCID CEO, said the past financial year had been a success, allowing for consolidation, reflection and innovation. “As this was our second year operating in the pandemic, we drew on our experience and reputation as a reliable, consistent service provider.
“The challenge we faced was how to help revive the local economy, support property owners and residents, and change perceptions to encourage people to return to town to do business, work, support restaurants and clubs, and enjoy what the CBD had to offer. We responded by creating new services, increasing budgets on existing services and reinvesting in the organisation in big and small projects to signal that the CBD was open for business.”
The CCID’s operational departments, namely Safety & Security, Urban Management, and Social Development, had worked hard and had adapted their strategies to deliver swiftly and effectively in the areas of safety, cleaning the CBD and working with the homeless population and addressing social issues. The Communications department had also continued to promote the organisation’s work while keeping visitors and potential property and business investors abreast of what was on offer in South Africa’s most successful and vibrant CBD
In addition to navigating a challenging year, the CCID collaborated with its key partners, including the City of Cape Town and the South African Police Service (SAPS), to find new and sustainable solutions to roll out in the CBD.
One of these was a night-time cleaning operation between CCID Safety and Security and CCID Urban Management, with assistance from the City’s Solid Waste Management Department, to deal with the increasing problem of illegally dumped waste.
Other projects included installing four public toilets in the CBD to counter the shortage of free ablution facilities in the CBD and wrapped over 700 trees in colourful cloth to enliven the urban environment.
At the event, Rob Kane, Chairperson of the CCID Board, reflected on how the CCID’s efforts had helped the CBD maintain its position as one of the country's top property investment destinations.
He also said business confidence among business owners is up and that the retail sector continues to recover from the pandemic’s impact. “We owe our ability to maintain the CBD’s position as an attractive destination to our partners. Together, we’ve done a phenomenal job promoting investment and reviving the inner city’s economy. I'm confident we'll continue to add value to our city on numerous levels.”
THE CCID AT WORK
In the year under review, from 1 July 2021 ending 30 June 2022,
CCID SAFETY & SECURITY
- Conducted 78 541 safety interventions in town
- Helped to secure 320 arrests
- Assisted the public 3 959 times
- CCID-funded Law Enforcement Officers issued fines to the value of R2.3 million
- CCID-funded traffic wardens issued fines to the value of R8.4 million
- Removed 1 226 tonnes of litter and illegally dumped waste to landfill
- Removed 682.5 kg ciggie-butt litter from the CCID’s 305 cigarette bins
- Removed 7 128 kg of debris from municipal drains
- Cleaned the 1 061 municipal drains in the CBD a total of 10 520 times
- Removed 2 107 incidents of graffiti
- Removed 37 513 kg debris from storm water drains
- Installed 259 rodent baiting boxes
- Undertook 275 paving repairs
- Planted a total of 50 Ficus and Cape Ash trees
- Interacted 1 326 times with homeless clients in town
- Placed 149 adults in shelters
- Transported 73 clients home for reunification with their families
- Assisted 265 homeless people with skills training and job referrals
- Collected 39 213 needles in public spaces
- Assisted 80 homeless clients with ID and social grant applications
- Achieved media exposure to the value of R12.1 million
- Generated 393 clips/articles across print, broadcast, and online media
- Reached 167 449 subscribers across the CCID’s online platforms
- Wrote 1 613 Facebook posts for the CCID’s 3 Facebook pages
- Reached 919 292 people through organic Facebook posts
- Conceptualised and rolled out two campaigns
- Produced 7 print and digital publications and 12 e-Newsletters
Issued by Atmosphere Communications on behalf of Sharon Sorour-Morris, Communications manager of the CCID email@example.com; cell 082 216 0835