December 6, 2017

Cape Town Water Crisis: What you’ll have to pay in ‘water tax’

Source: The South African

Date: 2017-12-05

It is all but confirmed that from February next year, Cape Town will be introducing a “water tax” or a water levy or a water surcharge. Call it whatever you will.

The purpose of the charge is to raise more capital for long-term drought solutions. But it’s also a bit of a Catch22. Since the City is generating less income from water – with everybody saving so much – they are collecting less revenue. Thus meaning less money to pay for solutions.

But just how much will you have to pay?

Let’s take a look.



Cape Town’s proposed water levy charges

Residential property value (in ZAR) Water tax (ZAR)
400k none
600k 35
800k 45
1m 50
2m 115
3m 170
4m 225
5m 280
6m 340
7m 420
10m 565
20m 1120
50m 2800

But really, if your property is valued at R4 million, we’re pretty sure you can afford the R200 a month to pay your surcharge. Weren’t you spending that on filling your pool before restrictions anyway?

The City of Cape Town is searching for an additional R1bn per year while the dams recover from the unprecedented drought conditions.

Cape Town’s water use has spiked over the last few weeks. With rainy season well and truly over and the tourist season set to begin, it’s crunch time to avoid day zero.

More Information

This post is sponsored by Chas Everitt Cape Town South

December 5, 2017

Cape Town has just been voted as the best city in the world… again!

British tourists have voted Cape Town the best city in the world for the fifth consecutive year.

After a poll of 90,000 readers in the 2017 Telegraph Travel Awards, the South African city of Cape Town was victorious, beating Vancouver and Tokyo to the top prize. Remarkably, it’s the fifth consecutive year that Cape Town has been named number one – and with all eyes on South Africa in 2018, the centenary year of Nelson Mandela’s birth, few would bet against it repeating the trick in 12 months time.

Enver Duminy for Cape Town Tourism says the recognition will aid in creating more job opportunities for locals.

“These accolades pave the way for even more innovation, entrepreneurship and job creation within the tourism sector.”

“They also accurately reflect the variety of experiences Cape Town has to offer visitors, from unparalleled natural beauty, to delicious, intimate culinary adventures in our many restaurants.”

Sporty, stylish, stunning, sociable… if Cape Town was a person, it would be that Hollywood starlet we all secretly envy. A coming-together of cultures, cuisines and landscapes, there’s nowhere quite like Cape Town, a singularly beautiful city crowned by the magnificent Table Mountain National Park.

So, whether you’re after natural scenery, or interested in indulging in the diverse food scene Cape Town offers, you won’t be let down.

Apart from the weak rand, which is making travel to South Africa very appealing to foreigners, Cape Town is only very accessible in terms of accommodation.

Cape Town currently has the 21st biggest Airbnb market in the world, and guests can stay in high profile Cape Town suburbs for a fraction of typical area prices – whilst also immersing themselves within local culture.

A high percentage of locals are also using Airbnb for staycations within SA’s borders.

For hotel stays, SA hotel prices low in comparison to other African hubs. The average rate for a hotel room in Addis Ababa is about R3 212 per night, which is more than double what guests would pay in Cape Town – an average of R1 448 per night, according to a 2015 survey.

The rest of the upper end of the ranking has a familiar look. Vancouver has played second fiddle to Cape Town for the last five editions of the awards, while Venice, Sydney and New York are perennial members of the top 10.

Here’s the full top 10 list:

  1. Cape Town
  2. Vancouver
  3. Tokyo
  4. Venice
  5. Sydney
  6. New York
  7. Seville
  8. Florence
  9. San Francisco
  10. Rome

Sources: Telegraph Travel Awards, December 3, 2017

More Information

This post is sponsored by Chas Everitt Cape Town South

November 27, 2017

No More Bare Feet – Uphawu

What it is?
“No More Bare Feet” was established in 2016 by Mondeka Mabibini, as the second leg of the Uphawu Community
Development organisation, of which she is the founder.

What’s our Aim?

The aim of the No More Bare Feet campaign is to give children in the rural areas of the Eastern Cape, where she comes from, shoes to wear to school. Many children are from poor backgrounds and their parents cannot afford to buy school shoes for them. Here poverty is dire and children have to walk up to 10km or more kilometres a day in order to get to and from school.

STBB’s involvement
With the support of national law firm STBB I Smith Tabata Buchanan Boyes, the campaign is now in its third year. All
shoes collected are distributed during the first two weeks of the school term to the schools. The vision is to motivate
or lift up the school children’s dignity and self-esteem.

How your donation helps
By donating a pair of shoes today, you:
• Make a difference to a child who walks to school barefoot over rough terrain, winter and summer;
• Instill self-esteem and confidence in the learners;
• Help build the learner’s dignity.

To those who are able to assist in this very worthy cause, either with a new pair of shoes or used shoes of any size, please drop off at any of our Chas Everitt Offices.

Locations:  Tokai, Bergvliet, Claremont and Fish Hoek before the 8 December 2017

Makes a huge difference to these kids’ lives as also to their parents and any contribution will be appreciated.

This post is sponsored by Chas Everitt Cape Town South


November 16, 2017

Removal of alien vegetation at Wemmershoek Dam will help City save water and stretch supply

From: City of Cape Town

Date: 15 November 2017

Today I visited the Wemmershoek Dam to view the progress made on removing alien vegetation in the catchment area. Alien vegetation around the dam and in the catchment areas uses a huge amount of water and clearing this vegetation will assist the city to conserve water that would have otherwise been used by these trees.

Over the last year, a City of Cape Town-appointed contractor has cut down over 50 hectares of pine trees from a city plantation used for commercial and industrial purposes. The remaining 110 hectares will be cleared over the next year. Removing these remaining plantations will improve stream flow into the dam and could secure an extra week or month worth of water supply for the city.

At Wemmershoek, the saving will be approximately 1 million litres per day when all pine trees are removed.

A process is now under way to ensure that we harvest the remaining plantation in a shorter period in order to minimize the potential loss of water. We will also be in contact with neighbouring land owners to ensure that the catchment area outside our boundary stays free of alien vegetation to secure a sustainable run-off into the Wemmershoek Dam.

This project forms part of our water resilience programme aimed at building up the city’s dam storage amid a persistent drought crisis.

This week dam storage levels declined by 1% to 36,8% and only 26,8% of that water is useable.

Collective water usage by the residents of Cape Town currently stands at 582 million litres per day. This is 82 million litres above the target usage of 500 million litres per day that we require to see the city through the drought.

We appreciate the water-saving efforts of Capetonians and I would like to thank Team Cape Town for their assistance. There are still many more residents and businesses that have to come on board to enhance our water-saving efforts. We can only make it through this drought with the help of each and every resident doing their part while the City works as fast as possible to bring additional supply online.

The City has implemented a successful vegetation control programme for more than 10 years and there are resources to continue the programme in the future.

As the City works on expediting all additional supply schemes, it is vital that water-saving by residents and businesses continues so that we can boost our joint efforts to beat the drought. Only by working together, will we ensure that we do not run out of water.

More Information

This post is sponsored by Chas Everitt Cape Town  South

November 14, 2017

Wind, hot weather leads to decline in dam levels

From: City of Cape Town

Dam storage levels are at 36.8%, with useable water at 26.8%. Collective water usage is 582 million litres, therefore 82 million litres above the required level of 500 million litres per day.

Our dam levels have declined by 1% over the past week. This could be attributed to the high winds and hot weather which contributed to evaporation. We have managed to halve Cape Town’s water usage with the help of 51% of our water users who have put tremendous efforts into saving water. We will only get through this crisis together. To make this partnership work even more effectively, I appeal to all water users, especially the 49% who are not saving water yet, to join us all as we escalate efforts to beat this drought. Your help is vital and we need you to come on board with Team Cape Town.

This summer with the heat and wind, we can expect a steady decline going forward, so continued savings are a must. We need to do more to bring our usage down while at the same time pulling out all of the stops to ensure that we implement various projects for additional water supply to help see us through to winter 2018. Additional supply goes hand in hand with further savings.

We have looked at ways to fund a first phase of water supply projects by relooking at our spend across the City to see which non-water-related projects we can temporarily postpone while protecting funds for basic and emergency services. Internally, we have made some tough decisions and we will continue to do what is in the best interests of the people of Cape Town, no matter how difficult the challenge. We will partly be funding our first seven additional water projects with this saving and reprioritised money which comprises some R2 billion. The first phase projects earmarked for these funds are the desalination plants at Monwabisi, Strandfontein, the V&A Waterfront, and Cape Town Harbour; the Atlantis and Cape Flats Aquifer projects; and the Zandvliet water recycling project make up the first seven emergency water projects of this phase.

An online toolkit has been developed with various resources for all to use to help us to drive this message. Please see our website,, to access material that you may require. This toolkit will be updated regularly.

For information on how to meet the daily water usage requirement, residents should please visit the water restrictions page on the City’s website: and utilise our water calculator:

Residents can contact the City via email to for queries about the water pressure reduction, or to report contraventions of the water restrictions (evidence should be provided to assist the City’s enforcement efforts), or they can send an SMS to 31373.
This post is sponsored by Chas Everitt Cape Town South


November 9, 2017

Southern Peninsula’s scenic Main Road open and ready for summer season

From: City of Cape Town

The multi-million rand rehabilitation of Main Road, one of the Southern Peninsula’s most scenic access routes, has been completed. With summer upon us, residents and visitors to the suburbs of Muizenberg, St James, and Kalk Bay can now fully enjoy the benefits of this project.

The City of Cape Town is wrapping up work on Main Road in the far south.

We completed the final asphalt surface of Main Road on Wednesday 1 November 2017. We will be done with minor snags by the end of this week which will have little, if any, impact on the traffic. This is a major accomplishment, not only for the City, but also for residents and business owners who patiently endured the roadworks, traffic disruptions, and stop/go systems while we were working on the most challenging phase of the project,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Transport and Urban Development, Councillor Brett Herron.

The City commenced with the first phase of the project – from Casa Labia in Muizenberg up to St James – in March 2008. Construction of Phase 2 – between Leighton Road in St James and the Kalk Bay Harbour entrance – started in January 2011 and was completed in August 2013.

‘We have nearly concluded this nine-year long project, with the overall investment amounting to approximately R340 million. The project took place over three phases and we are almost done with the third and final phase. Road users will still see some activity next to the road while we are sorting some minor finishing to the footways. We are also busy with the upgrade of the parking area at the Kalk Bay harbour which should be completed before the builders’ holiday.

‘The bulk of the R340 million was spent on the rehabilitation of the road base layers and surfacing of Main Road from the intersection with Atlantic Road in Muizenberg to the intersection with Clovelly Road; the construction of a new retaining wall at Clovelly; and replacing timeworn underground services such as the 100-year-old sewer pipes and 50-year-old water main at Clovelly. We also installed low-voltage electricity cables, new stormwater infrastructure and streetlights,’ said Councillor Herron.

The construction of a new retaining wall above the railway line in Clovelly posed the biggest challenge. Apart from making it possible to widen the road at this section, the retaining wall also serves as a support structure for Main Road. Thanks to the wider road, there is now parallel parking along the sea side and walkways on the mountain and sea side for pedestrians and cyclists all the way from Woolley’s Pool to the Silvermine River bridge.

‘We have used state-of-the-art technology to stabilise and compact the soil to ensure that it has sufficient bearing capacity for the foundations of the retaining wall. This technology saved us up to six months’ working time – an important factor for local residents and business owners, given the disruptions that were caused by the ongoing roadworks. The retaining wall has been fitted with a handrail, and we will soon install a glass barrier along a short section where Metrorail’s overhead electricity cables are in close proximity to the footway. These features were carefully chosen so that we do not impede the views of False Bay, Simon’s Town and Fish Hoek,’ said Councillor Herron.

The wall has been dressed with sandstone that was excavated from the site, and is buttressed at 5 m intervals to create shadow lines, adding to its aesthetics.

The revamping in 2015 of the historic mile area in Muizenberg, a surfing haven for locals and visitors, formed part of the project.

‘We refurbished walkways, parking areas and access routes. We paved the sidewalks with red bricks along the stretch of Main Road where it meanders under the colonnades of historic buildings dating from the late 1890s. The median island at the crossing of York and Main Roads was extended to make it safer for pedestrians crossing Main Road towards Muizenberg Park,’ said Councillor Herron.

A new grass-block public parking area with an additional 30 bays was added near the police station along School Road. Opposite the Muizenberg Station, an additional seven parking bays were created thanks to the new layout of the Bay Road steps, also built from sandstone to fit in with the character of the area.

‘We resurfaced the parking area opposite the False Bay College, replaced the streetlights with new pedestrian-friendly streetlights that are lower and provide better lighting at night, and installed sandstone benches in the communal area adjacent to the railway line where students and visitors can sit while enjoying the view over False Bay,’ said Councillor Herron.

The sidewalks along York Road were widened and brick-paved to protect the columns of the historic buildings along the short one-way street.

‘This was a unique project, given the existing roadway’s long history dating back to the 19th century when the alignment of Main Road was first formalised and road drainage installed after the rail line was constructed to Kalk Bay in 1882,’ said Councillor Herron.

The kerbs and channels, for example, are constructed from hand-hewn local sandstone. During the rehabilitation of this section of road, the stones were lifted, stored and reused in the vicinity where they were originally placed.

‘In fact, some of the stone kerbs and channels in the vicinity of the St James and Kalk Bay railway stations had not been touched for nearly 140 years – that is until we commenced with the rehabilitation project. As such, we took careful consideration of the history and heritage of this area during the design and subsequent rehabilitation works with the assistance of local residents and interest groups,’ said Councillor Herron.

The significance of this project is obvious given that Main Road is one of only three access routes to the far south and that it currently carries about 20 000 vehicles per day. Furthermore, the maintenance of existing infrastructure and assets counts among the key priorities in the City’s Organisational Development and Transformation Plan.

‘We estimate that the investment in Main Road will extend the life cycle of the road by at least another 20 years without the need for major maintenance. I once again want to thank all of those who were involved – from our residents, local business owners and interested groups, to the contractors and the officials – for their patience, hard work and contribution,’ said Councillor Herron.

This post is sponsored by Chas Everitt Cape Town South

November 9, 2017

City commissions project to bring additional drinking water online from springs and Molteno Reservoir

From: City of Cape Town

The first water from the Oranjezicht Main Springs Chamber started flowing into the Molteno Reservoir today, 8 November 2017. This is part of the City of Cape Town’s ongoing Water Resilience Programme to increase the supply of drinking water. This project will see an additional two million litres per day of safe, clean drinking water added to the City’s bulk water network.

Three springs feed into the main collection chamber in Oranjezicht, where water is collected before being conveyed via a 525m long existing pipeline to the reservoir. The water is then chlorinated to bring it in line with the South African National Standard for drinking water (SANS 241).

The project entailed refurbishing for drinking water purposes the existing but disused pipeline, which takes the water from natural springs to the Molteno Reservoir. New chlorination equipment to dose the disinfectant along the pipeline linking it to the reservoir itself has also been installed.

When the City started investigating the possibility of using these springs as additional sources of drinking water in 2014, our Scientific Services Branch found that water from some of the springs was of a very high quality.

Previously, this untreated water from the main springs collection chamber was used for irrigation at the Green Point Urban Park, Cape Town Stadium and Green Point Athletics track.

From the commencement of the City’s investigation to this point of commissioning, the cost of this project amounted to around R4,1 million.

The City is committed to doing everything it can to ensure that Cape Town has sufficient drinking water to see us through the upcoming summer months, and beyond.

Last week I also visited the Atlantis Aquifer where refurbishment work by the City’s Water and Sanitation Management Department has increased yield from this source by an additional five million litres a day.

We will continue working on a range of augmentation plans, fast-tracking processes as much as possible to bring alternative sources of drinking water online, including desalination, ground water extraction, and water reuse as we build a water-resilient Cape Town. Together with the great water-saving efforts of residents, we will make it through this unprecedented drought.

This Post is sponsored by Chas Everitt Cape Town South

November 4, 2017

Save Water – Stop Eating Meat!

To make a burger, first, you need 2498 litres of water …
Our severe drought in the Western Cape has made a lot of us more aware of our ‘water footprint’, the amount of fresh water we use plus the amount used for the goods and services we consume every day.
The obvious contributors to our water footprint are washing, cooking and bathing. But the biggest contributor to our water footprint is our diet!
While these are US figures they are indeed fascinating and there is no reason to think they are not compatible where comparable!
“On average, the water we use in our households is about 98 gallons a day, says a U.S. Geological Survey. The industrial goods we use — paper, cotton, clothes — that’s about another 44 gallons a day. But it takes more than 1,000 gallons of water a day per person to produce the food (and drinks) in the average U.S. diet, according to several sources. More than 53 gallons of water go into making 1 cup of orange juice, for example.”
Just to get a sense of how much water goes into growing and processing what we eat, here’s a list of the water footprint of some common foods, via National Geographic:
“A 1/3-pound burger requires 660 gallons of water. Most of this water is for producing beef.
1 pound of beef requires 1,799 gallons of water, which includes irrigation of the grains and grasses in feed, plus water for drinking and processing.
1 slice of bread requires 11 gallons of water. Most of this water is for producing wheat (see below).
1 pound of wheat requires 132 gallons of water.
1 gallon of beer requires 68 gallons of water or 19.8 gallons of water for 1 cup. Most of that water is for growing barley (see below).
1 pound of barley requires 198 gallons of water.
1 gallon of wine requires 1,008 gallons of water (mostly for growing the grapes), or 63.4 gallons of water for 1 cup.
1 apple requires 18 gallons of water. It takes 59.4 gallons of water to produce 1 cup of apple juice.
1 orange requires 13 gallons of water. It takes 53.1 gallons of water for 1 cup of orange juice.
1 pound of chicken requires 468 gallons of water.
1 pound of pork requires 576 gallons of water.
1 pound of sheep requires 731 gallons of water.
1 pound of goat requires 127 gallons of water.
1 pound of rice requires 449 gallons of water.
1 pound of corn requires 108 gallons of water.
1 pound of soybeans requires 216 gallons of water.
1 pound of potatoes requires 119 gallons of water.
1 egg requires 53 gallons of water.
1 gallon of milk requires 880 gallons of water or 54.9 gallons of water for 1 cup. That includes water for raising and grazing cattle, and bottling and processing.
1 pound of cheese requires 600 gallons of water. On average it requires 1.2 gallons of milk to make 1 pound of cheese.
1 pound of chocolate requires 3,170 gallons of water.
November 1, 2017

New culvert on the cards

From Constantiaberg Bulletin

Work on replacing the culvert on the Westlake River in Lakeside has begun. The City of Cape Town said the old 3m-wide Westlake River culvert was very old and had created a dip in the riding surface of the Main Road. A new culvert with a width of approximately 6m would be constructed to replace the existing problematic culvert.

Mayoral committee member for area south, Eddie Andrews, said during building operations the City would maintain two-way traffic flow.

He said the contract would initially have a slow start with the relocation of electrical, fibre-optic, and telephone cables alongside the road, and the relocation of a large water main. The construction of the new culvert would commence thereafter.

“Although residents will see some activity on the site, the physical construction of the culvert will commence only within the next five weeks or so.

“The work will be done in phases to ensure that two lanes remain open to traffic at all times. However, the right-turn lane from Main Road into Chenel Way will be closed during the construction of the new culvert,” he said.

“The first phase will entail the widening of the culvert on both ends while traffic is accommodated on the central portion of the existing culvert. Once completed, traffic will be diverted onto the new portions while the central portion of the new culvert is being constructed,” said Mr Andrews.

Temporary traffic signs and delineators will be in place to guide traffic where the road is deviated. Flagmen will be utilised when necessary to assist with the control of the traffic.

The R20 million job will take about 12 months to complete, if all goes as planned.

“Once completed, the investment in the new culvert will contribute to the general safety of the road and the longevity of the infrastructure. I want to thank residents in advance for their patience and cooperation,” said Mr Andrews.

SLR Consulting has been appointed to provide the environmental control officer services for the duration of the construction period and they will be undertaking monthly site visits. The position of the site office has not yet been finalised.

This Post is sponsored by Chas Everitt Cape Town South
October 31, 2017

Notice of immediate implementation of water rationing across Cape Town

31 October 2017

The City of Cape Town has activated water rationing to forcibly lower water usage in line with water restrictions across the metro as phase 1 of its critical water shortages disaster plan.

Water usage remains dangerously high above required levels.

Rationing will lead to intermittent supply, likely during peak water consumption hours in the mornings and evenings. It won’t result in a complete shutdown, but some areas may experience short water outages. Service will be restored as quickly as possible. Please note the following key points:

  • Please keep up to 5 litres of water available for essential use only during rationing.
  • Please do not store excessive municipal water.
  • Definitive timetables of the outages cannot be provided as water systems must be managed flexibly to avoid damage to critical infrastructure.
  • When you experience a loss of water supply and before you contact our call centre, please check your neighbour’s supply first to see whether it is likely a case of rationing.
  • If you reside in or operate from multi-storey buildings, ensure that the water supply system (booster pumps and roof-top storage) is in working order in compliance with the Water By-law.
  • The City is not liable for any impact on or damage to private infrastructure resulting from the rationing or associated operations.
  • Please ensure that all taps are closed when not in use to prevent damage/flooding when the supply is restored. Ensure that you take the necessary steps, such as speaking to your insurer if possible, to mitigate potential damage and for fire prevention.
  • When supply is restored, the water may appear to be cloudy from the extreme pressure reduction exercise. Please do not waste the initial water. Use it for flushing.

Water management devices are also being installed city-wide to limit excessive consumption.

Further restriction levels and usage targets will be announced at short notice and as necessary to drive down consumption to a safe level. Critical services such as clinics and hospitals will be largely unaffected. This phase is intended to help us avoid more extreme phases of the disaster plan.

Phases of the critical water shortages disaster plan

Phase 1: Activated: water rationing through extreme pressure reduction and limiting supply
Phase 2: Disaster restrictions (water collection points)
Phase 3: Full-scale disaster implementation (extreme rationing at distribution points)

Cape Town is situated in a water-scarce region. Climatic unpredictability, such as this protracted drought, must be seen as the New Normal which affects all aspects of our lives. In Cape Town, the Western Cape, and many other parts of South Africa, this severe drought continues.

Please visit for all further information required, including information on the Water By-law. We will only get through this together.

Let’s Save, Cape Town! Together.

Yours faithfully

Achmat Ebrahim

This post is sponsored by Chas Everitt Cape Town South 

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Current conditions for Lakeside as of Thu, 24 Mar 2016 9:59 pm SAST

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