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Brackenfell: Northern changes

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Brackenfell has been transformed from a suburb in the north ­serving Cape Town and its surrounds to a self-contained hub of prosperity where house prices record good growth

Established in 1913, the northern suburb of Brackenfell is bordered by Kraaifontein in the north-east, Kuils Rivier in the south-west and Durbanville in the north-west.

No other precinct in the greater Cape Town area has undergone such a complete and impressive a transformation as Brackenfell, says Rowan Alexander, director of Alexander Swart Property, which has its headquarters in this suburb.

“In the past few years we’ve seen Brackenfell go from a dormitory suburb serving Cape Town and surrounding precincts to a prosperous, thriving, self-contained suburb. Property development has been both a catalyst and a beneficiary of this transformation,” says Alexander.

“The resale market is still extremely strong and vibrant. Lightstone statistics show the average number of homes sold/transferred between 2007 and 2010 was 1203 a year, and an average of 1993 a year since 2011. This supports our claim of a ‘mini boom’ in our area.”

The City of Cape Town and local stakeholders, with the significant help of funds generated by property developers, have enhanced and improved Brackenfell’s infrastructure with projects such as landscaping and planting trees in public open spaces, central traffic islands and verges. This has been done with indigenous, waterwise plants,” says Alexander.

Places of interest and things to do in Brackenfell

Other projects include upgrading or building new access roads to freeways, like the R300/Bottelary interchange and the link between Old Oak Road and the N1, and upgrading Saxdowne Road to Kuils River.

Following closely behind development of 650 housing units in Burgundy and Sonkring since 2012 have been a number of new schools and school upgrades, including the government’s new Protea Heights High and the private enterprise Curro Castle Pre-Primary and Curro Primary schools.

I have been living in Brackenfell since 1999 and went to primary and high school here. Brackenfell Primary and Brackenfell High are within walking distance of most residential
areas. The town also has three other schools and another will open in January 2019. One can see by the growth in the number of schools how the town is booming. It is wonderful for me, a new father, to see my son attend creche here. – Local Jason Blight
Picture: Bheki Radebe/ANA

Perhaps the most significant of all the changes in Brackenfell has been ongoing development in its industrial areas, such as Brackengate Business Park, says Alexander. 

“Most of the development has been for very large warehouse and distribution centres. Among those who have moved in here are Food Lovers’ Market, British American Tobacco, DSV Freight, Cape Air-Conditioning and The Hunting Group.”

Residential property in Brackenfell has spurred on and benefited from the area’s improved infrastructure, facilities and services, says Alexander. The 10.2% average increase in house prices over the past five years in Brackenfell is among the best in South Africa.

“For example, a three-bedroom 175m² home with a swimming pool on a 500m² plot in Brackenfell which sold in 2012 for R1.3million would today achieve R2.1m.”

Alexander says he is often asked whether this price growth is sustainable. The answer is always yes because the remaining open ground (along Bottelary Road, where it meets Kruispad) cannot be provided with sewerage for the foreseeable future. The shortage of new housing in the area will, therefore, continue to boost the price of existing homes.

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