The Seawinds Smart Park in Lavender Hill that cost R7.6-million to develop has been reduced to a pile of rubble after frequent destruction and vandalism.

Mayoral Committee Member for Community searches and Health Councillor Zahid Badroodien comments on the devastating state of the recreational park.

“The park has been damaged to such an extent that it is unrecognisable as the same space it was when it opened,” he says.

The park was designed with families in mind, with a water play area where children could learn about the water cycle, a splash ground of shallow water, a play area for young children, a multi-purpose playground, two multipurpose courts that could be used for ball games, a picnic area, and an outdoor exercise area.

Opened in 2017 on Heritage Day, it took a mere 16 months for vandals to destroy this once thriving and neat public space. All the park’s features have been buried, vandalised or stolen.

“At the time it was a heartwarming launch as the aim of the park was to bring people together for shared experiences and to build on a lasting legacy for our children,” says Badroodien.

The Seawinds Smart Park in its original condition

He adds, “The selfish deeds of those behind these malicious crimes often affect the most vulnerable in our communities, the very people that need to use community spaces to empower themselves.”

Badroodien is encouraging members of the public to report any incidents of vandalism to the authorities.

“We must report acts of vandalism and theft to the police and law enforcement as and when we witness them. This requires both active citizenry and exercising our moral duty to do what is right.”

The park is currently in this state.

In order to tackle vandalism and destruction of public property, the City’s Community Services and Health Department will be actively working with communities, the South African Police Service and Law enforcement to find solutions.

“The task of restoring dignity in our community spaces requires unwavering commitment and civic duty from all of us,” says Badroodien.

Picture: City of Cape Town

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