More than two decades ago, a Gordons Bay resident, Johannes Zandberg aka Zantie, came up with an idea to develop a walk-on golf course that would be open to the public but maintained by Fairview Golf Estate. The project developed by Pine Acres (Pty) Ltd progressed quite quickly and then regressed. But since the Home Owners Association (HOA) took over the golf course three years ago, development is back on track, with a new Clubhouse and rerouting of the onsite river taking priority.
Water is a major attraction of the nine-hole golf course that meanders 2,705 m between the different sections of the housing development. The river is a natural feature and there are two popular water hazards. But, with the ever-present risk of water shortages, water should never be taken for granted.
The Sir Lowry’s River forms the southern boundary of the Estate which was developed on farmland. Because the 604-m wide water course has a very low threshold due to the 100-year floodline, between R280-and R300-million will be spent on changing the water course over a three-year period, from March 2020.
Another important element is the waste water treatment works in the north-east corner of the Estate. Water from here may be used for irrigation. Land will be reclaimed in the new project, and mini dams will be developed for irrigation with water being pumped from the river. The location of the to-be-reclaimed land is privately owned, but plans are that either Fairview Golf Estate or the City of Cape Town will develop it and build attractive river-facing housing.
A great deal of research has been undertaken, and a high tech soil conditioner will be used to improve the drainage and infiltration rate of water in the soil, in this way improving the sustainability of the project as a whole. Sustainability is also a big factor for the golf estate, and in the past three years, the HOA has planted more than 1,000 trees including acacias, beefwoods, kabobs and slow-growing yellowwood. At two of the holes, trees will need to be removed and replanted to accommodate the new water course.
Areas of public open space are also being upgraded, with stone and palms being established between the greens. There are also areas of land on the northern boundary that are earmarked for a possible pro/practice range and a proposed driving range. The south-western corner of the property is earmarked for a commercial service station.