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Monday Feb 17, 2014

Tramway land to be auctioned in Sea Point

Just a week is left for online tenders for a prime Atlantic Seaboard property, said to be the biggest to have gone on sale on the sought-after strip in almost 20 years.

The 7 500m2 property in Sea Point.

Although there's no firm price attached, the hefty price the 7 500m 2 property is expected to sell for becomes evident when comparing it with one in Mouille Point, just more than a quarter of the size, which is said to be worth about R100 million.

The vacant land in Sea Point, owned by the embattled Tramway Road Community Trust, was put out to tender last month.

But while dollar signs are flashing, the exceptional land sale is likely to be bitter-sweet for Trust beneficiaries set to benefit.

Nearly three years ago, the sod was turned on erf 1225, earmarked for an upmarket residential development to be named The Orchards.

But last June the Trust asked the city to sell the land, which it received as part of a land restitution claim, so it could settle a R14m debt with Investec.

Aubrey Miller, chief executive of Sealedbid, to which the sale was entrusted, described it as an 'exceptionally rare' development opportunity which he said had seen them flooded with proposals from as far afield as the UK and Germany.

Miller had also been approached by dozens of property valuers to help their clients with a valuation, but he stressed that it was 'extremely difficult' to determine a price tag.

Referring to a property in Clifton of about 2 000m 2 , currently on the market, Miller said it was going for about R70m. The property is estimated at 7 546m2. Miller said their role had been to 'expose' the property to potential buyers. Bids would close at 5pm on Friday.

The Tramway Road Community Trust was set up in 2001 to represent 34 beneficiaries whose families were evicted from Tramway Road in the 1960s in terms of the Group Areas Act.

Sea Point ward councillor Beverley Schäfer said while she was 'relieved' that the process of getting the property sold had reached this point, it was also unfortunate that the development had failed to materialise. Mayor Patricia de Lille had used her 'power of delegation' for the approval to see the property sold at current market value.

Weekend Argus (Sunday Edition)


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