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'Die Laan' planned as money hub

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'Die Laan' planned as money hub

by Barbara Meyer
05 Sep 2007
Peoples Post
Peoples Post

Manenberg Avenue (commonly known as 'Die Laan') could soon give birth to a new economic lifeline for residents of Manenberg and Tambo Village, hopefully within the next nine months.

The traders of Manenberg and Tambo could soon be bringing their wares from their homes to sell in "Die Laan" in a bid to generate wealth in the area and attract tourists into Manenberg.

Amelia September, chairperson of the Community Police Forum in Manenberg, says that the business plan is to bring businesses out of their houses and onto the streets of Manenberg. The economic strip, which is an initiative of Proudly Manenberg, will run from the existing Manenberg Avenue in Manenberg into Tambo Village in Gugulethu.

"We hope there will be opportunities for a flea market, a bed and breakfast in the area and tourism," says September.

The development venture has been dubbed Creative Streets and was launched in Jordaan Street on Saturday, 25 August.

Over 20 stall holders from Manenberg set up shop on the streets of the avenue in support of the campaign.

Mario Wanza, chairperson of the Proudly Manenberg campaign, says they will be working closely with the City of Cape Town to regulate the trading, and adds that the aim of the first stage of the drive is to generate economic activity in Manenberg Avenue.

The entire process to breath life into "Die Laan" is hoped to take nine months. Wanza says that he cannot project how much money the stall holders could make from this venture, but it could be millions, according to Andrea van der Pool, Proudly Manenberg's business sector coordinator.

Creative Streets will launch their community gardens project in celebration of Arbour Week in Manenberg Avenue opposite the town centre on Friday, 7 September.

"The event will take the form of a festival and this will be the first garden project out of the five garden projects planned for Manenberg. The Minister of Economic Development, Tasneem Essop, will symbolically turn the soil at 18:00 on Friday. The garden will serve a multipurpose function, being both a place of beauty and of economic activity," says Wanza.

A second prong to the Creative Streets development venture is the inclusion of Tambo Village into Manenberg, an attempt to bridge the divide between the two communities.

Ndumie Mfaxa, a community development worker and chairperson of the ANC Women's League in Tambo Village and Manenberg, says that the residents of Tambo Village will also benefit from the venture, as Tambo Village and Manenberg are becoming one.

"We want it to be integrated and make it part of the Manenberg," says a resident.

Abduragiem Orrie, Councillor of Ward 46, says that he has heard of the initiative but that he does not know enough about the venture to be able to comment on its plans.

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