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By Ilse de Lange


Homeowners association wins lease battle against Tshwane

The city refused to consider renewing the association's 10 year lease agreement to rehabilitate and develop the Waterkloof Ridge Nature Valley Park.

The homeowners association of the upmarket Waterkloof Boulevard Estate has obtained an urgent court order forcing the Tshwane municipality to reconsider their application to renew their lease of the surrounding Waterkloof Ridge Nature Valley Park.

The residents of four security complexes in the estate, in the east of Pretoria, in 2005 entered into a 10-year lease agreement with the city to rehabilitate and develop the park, the last piece of “shale bushveld” in Gauteng.

A director of the homeowners association, Pasqualino Lattuca, said in court papers that in 2014 when they tried to extend the lease, an option provided for in the agreement, they were given the run-around for over a year and informed in August 2015 their application had been refused.

An official told the estate manager that all maintenance and development of the park should be stopped immediately and the city intended putting it up for tender and that the lease would be awarded to the highest bidder.

The North Gauteng High Court ordered the municipality to reconsider the renewal of the association’s lease within the next month and to give them a chance to make representations.

Lattuca said the association had registered with the Wildlife and Environment Society to implement high-impact environmental and conservation projects in the park and formed a non-profit company to develop and rehabilitate it.

He said the municipality’s conduct in not giving them an opportunity to make representation for a lease renewal was indicative of procedurally unfair administrative action.

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