A new Proposal for the development of the West Bank  was presented at a small meeting  recently  by the proposers Adreach.   Clr. Earp, the PCA, two residents from Panners Lane, FOFS (me).   It ‘s title is  ‘The Johannesburg Outdoor Adventure Park Project”.

It is in fact  a wild water Park which will see the entire West Bank  covered with a vast concrete 3m high pool in which there are various water conditions – rapids for rafting,  turbulent area for canoeing and a huge pool area for swimming, scuba diving, water polo  and other activities such as training for  rescue services etc.

It is to be built to ‘International Standards’ and the venue will host ‘International’ competitions in water sports.

There have been promises to the Council to  ‘Adopt a River’ – the Yukskei was mentioned – with an area developed for recreation for those along it – Alex -. Big carrots for the Council, some Depts. have already seen the proposal and one is in favour of it.

While this is a wonderful idea for outdoor activities of this kind and, being Internationally recognized, is a plus for the city,  being right opposite the Field & Study Park on  land that from the aerial photograph,  is too small for all the activities and the traffic and parking that will be generated.   It is edge to edge on three sides. No room for “spectators” – events – no room for large enough facilities – toilets, Café (refreshments?) seating area for this.  Large pump stations will be needed to create the water conditions.

Not enough parking – a large parking area was actually shown in the middle of the Park with a path through the  Park to a bridge to connect the two. (This was hastily removed) but proves that they need more and I have no doubt that a move will be made in the future to get a chunk of the Park for this. They have nowhere else to go because they have taken up all that they havbe.

The roadway and the parking are just over the river from the Park, virtually on the edge of the servitude though I was told enough for large trees to be planted. If you stand or picnic down by the river as park goers now do, you will look straight into the front ends of the cars parked the length of the main field and the noise of the cars, water and that of people tearing down rapids,  will fill our peaceful valley and the Park will never be the same again.

That the land needs to be developed is a given   but not at the expense of losing what we have – A HERITAGE PARK.  FOFS has been so close to suitable Development twice.

The above is my opinion, that of the FOFS Committee members will be forthcoming when two are able to attend a meeting after the 4th Oct.  We have been asked to send a letter of support for the project.

Please comment – rose@fofs.co.za – Facebook  – fieldandstudy park