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Bayside Canal’s R87.5 million upgrade set to improve Rietvlei water quality


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Bayside Canal’s R87.5 million upgrade set to improve Rietvlei water quality

City of Cape Town

4th March 2024


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As a result of development within the catchment area, the City’s Water and Sanitation Directorate has identified the need to upgrade the Bayside Canal to cater for increased stormwater flow during peak periods. Upgrades to the canal will also address the major challenges where litter and pollution from various stormwater channels end up in the Rietvlei.

Mayoral Committee Member for Water and Sanitation, Councillor Zahid Badroodien is optimistic about the promising progress being made on the upgrade of the Bayside Canal, from Blaauwberg Road to the Rietvlei in Tableview, which began in November last year. 


The aim of this upgrade is threefold: to increase the capacity of the Bayside canal; to provide naturally-structured treatment facilities which improve the quality of stormwater runoff that flows from the canal into the Rietvlei, and to provide adequate access for systematic maintenance in the future. 

This is one of the City’s major river and waterways infrastructure upgrade projects currently under way, which forms part of the R131 million investment into projects of this nature in the 2023/24 financial year.


The scope of the upgrade includes: 

  • Lining the side slopes of the canal situated south of Blaauwberg Road; 
  • Providing floating litter booms to remove solid waste from the stormwater;
  • Constructing parallel primary sedimentation ponds, a secondary treatment channel and reed bed ponds for further treatment to improve the quality of the water;
  • Constructing a bypass channel;
  • Constructing laydown areas next to the primary ponds and secondary treatment channel, for access for future maintenance 

Great care is being taken to ensure that the upgrade enhances the natural ecosystem of the Rietvlei and surrounds. Waterbodies opposite West Coast Road will remain undisturbed. There will also be no interference to the aquatic and natural habitat. A search and rescue operation was conducted before construction began, in order to locate rare and endangered plant species, as well as to gather plants for both on and off-site restoration.

Work is expected to be completed by mid-June 2025. 

‘Careful consideration was taken for the natural environment when the Water and Sanitation Directorate embarked on this R87 million upgrade. 

‘I am excited about the significant advantages it will provide for the community – not only in preventing future flooding, but also in enhancing the quality of the stormwater that enters the Rietvlei.

‘This investment is part of the City's collective efforts towards our ambitious goals to become a more water-sensitive city and improve the health of the city's waterways,’ said Councillor Zahid Badroodien.

Issued by the City of Cape Town


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