Lagoons and lawyers: Pretoria 'beach' residents unhappy with changes

There is trouble brewing in paradise, as homeowners living at Pretoria's 'beach' are clashing with the property developers over the new regulations in the Blyde Riverwalk Estate.

2021-09-20 07:53:00 PM

There is trouble brewing in paradise, as homeowners living at Pretoria's 'beach' are clashing with the property developers over the new regulations in the Blyde Riverwalk Estate.

There is trouble brewing in paradise, as homeowners living at Pretoria's 'beach' are clashing with the property developers over the new regulations in the Blyde Riverwalk Estate.

20 September 2021 - 18:29The Blyde Riverwalk Estate in Pretoria has an exclusive lagoon with free access for permanent residents only. File photo.Image:Thapelo Morebudi/The Sunday TimesThere is trouble brewing in paradise, as homeowners living at Pretoria's “beach” are clashing with the property developers over new regulations within The Blyde Riverwalk Estate. 

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Balwin, one of SA’s largest property companies, invested R4.2bn for the estate, a residential development in Pretoria East that boasts its own giant private beach. There are about 200 short-term rental apartments in the property and more than 900 owner-occupied or long-term rented apartments.

But the latest issues stem from disgruntled homeowners taking issue with the homeowners' association (HOA) members, who they say are taking unilateral decisions adversely affecting them. The leading disagreement is the decision to introduce new short-term lending terms. headtopics.com

A representative for Balwin would not be interviewed, saying, that “due to the ongoing engagement with the owners of short-term rental apartments, the HOA and Balwin unfortunately have to decline the interview opportunity at this point in time”.That's a big pool

The Blyde Riverwalk Estate has a 1.5ha lagoon which holds 35-million litres of water, a remote controlled Kreepy Krauly and 2,700 tons of beach sand.Despite this, they did send a joint statement which TimesLIVE was told had been issued earlier.The meeting between the clashing parties, or their representatives, took place on Monday after some residents protested outside the gates of the complex.

Reuben Phala from LN Motimele Attorneys, which is representing disgruntled owners, outlined the nature of the dispute.He said the rules of the complex state that short-term lending, such as Airbnb or other holiday letting, would be allowed upon approval of the HOA. Once approved, the HOA and short-term lending (STL) members would sign a contract – “the STL1" – which was a list of regulations governing the process. 

Phala said that on July 23, the HOA decided to terminate STL1 and introduce STL2 - which had “adverse terms such as double levies, a R2,500 deposit ... and blocked access [to some facilities] for short-term lending guests”.“Owners took issue with this and wrote a letter through their attorneys. This letter was ignored until the matter was referred by owners to CSOS [Community Schemes Ombud Service] for urgent relief,” said Phala. headtopics.com

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The blyde is crap

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