30 Mar 2017 17:50pm
WALVIS BAY, 30 MAR (NAMPA) Some owners of beach houses in Long Beach Extension 2 are in favour of controlling peoples movement and the speed at which cars drive in the area.
They said controlled movement based on municipal bylaws is the best option.
Last year, a group of homeowners complained of noise pollution from quad bikes, garbage left by holidaymakers and speeding cars, saying they do not sleep in peace anymore.
They did this in a letter of complaint sent through their lawyer to the municipality, in which they also said these activities depreciate the values of their property.
They demanded that the Walvis Bay Municipality close the area and that entry be monitored, like a private estate.
After the media picked up the story, the suggestion evoked concern from the public who said the beach is a public space and thus should not be closed simply because someone owns a house close to it.
The situation escalated and the municipality on Wednesday held a public meeting to collect the views of both parties.
Homeowners and other residents at the meeting were asked to give reasons why the area should be closed or remain open.
This was also a platform for suggestions on how the issue can be solved.
Of the more than 30 participants, nobody suggested that the area be closed, but all agreed that movement in the area should be better controlled.
Controlled movement means a speed limit of 15 kilometres per hour, while loud music is not allowed and late night partying is prohibited as in any other residential areas.
I counted about 50 speeding cars in front of my house last December, which drastically reduces the value of my property. Such activities must be stopped, said an anonymous homeowner.
Other homeowners suggested that the Police and Neighbourhood Watch group enforce bylaws and increase patrols during busy times like the festive season and Easter Weekend.
General Manager of Roads and Building Control in the Walvis Bay Municipality, Andre Burger said if the area is closed, the value of houses will go up as if it is a private beach.
That is not good because the public is locked out while the house owners benefit, Burger said.
He was concerned about the bylaw that restricts the driving of vehicles to 50 metres from the bathing areas or high water mark, which is where the houses begin.
Burger said this bylaw restricts driving to the small area next to the houses, which is a public area. This, he said, does not limit noise pollution and other disturbances.
David Uushona, the chairperson of the Task Force responsible for the matter, adjourned the meeting after two hours.
He said the Walvis Bay Town Council might consider revising the laws to ensure proper control of the area.
We will submit these suggestions to the council for deliberation and decision making on the way forward, he said, adding that another public meeting for an update will be called in a month or two.