Following the proposed changes to suburban road closures, the City of Johannesburg has called for public comment. The Security Access Restrictions Policy was first introduced in 2014 and establishes the laws which govern road closures. However, as a result of new developments taking place, these policies have needed to be amended.
Originally, security closures weren't allowed to use automated security features and for 24 hours a day pedestrian gates at permanent locked gates should be open. This is in terms of the policy in question.
However, the new proposals allow for automated security features to be used if certain criteria can be met. This being that it is the width of the road and that it doesn't restrict the access of disabled pedestrians to name a few. Although these automated features will need some form of human intervention. Should this automated security feature deny access to a person then the authorisation granted by the City could be withdrawn.
Regarding pedestrian gates, it is now possible to submit a motivation for the closing of them if they are located within 300 metres of a manned boom gate and if it is near to high-risk areas such as highways and informal settlements among others. While the decision to do so is not one that is taken lightly, it if can be proved that these gates are being used as getaways then the motivation will be considered by the City.
Usually, the needs of pedestrians are taken into consideration when making such a decision so the times of closure for the pedestrian gate will be agreed to by the City.
Other proposals include the subject of tariffs that are to be paid to the City for the regulating of the closures, access for emergency vehicles, and the improvement of the processing of applications.
The impact on road users should be minimal because the amendments plan to create a balance between the residents security needs and pedestrians ability to freely move without obstruction.
Ample time is given for all property owners within the enclosed area to comment on any security closure and all the comments are considered when the City makes its final decision. It then provides terms and conditions to protect the rights of all affected.
In conclusion, the opinions of all parties will be analyse to find the best solution to closures. But, since a policy of separate development was not subscribed to by the City, an application for a closure won’t be approved of if there isn’t a crime problem in the area, and if the crime statistics cannot be verified by the SAPS.
Contact our attorneys for expert legal advice.
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