The Pinelands HPOZ

Quick FAQs on the Heritage Protection Overlay Zone (HPOZ)

Map of the Pinelands HPOZ (jpg download)

Pinelands Heritage Advisory Committee (HAC)

2018 HAC Meeting Dates for Comment on Plans in the HPOZ

Protection of Trees in the HPOZ

LUM Submission for Trees in the HPOZ (pdf download)

City Information and Guidelines for an HPOZ (pdf download)

History of Pinelands

The layout of Pinelands is based on the revolutionary town planning ideas of Sir Ebenezer Howard and the first “Garden City” to be developed in South Africa. The Local authority considers Pinelands as a suburb containing structures, landscaping, natural features or sites with historic, architectural, cultural or aesthetic significance and declared it a Heritage Protected Overlay Zone (HPOZ). An HPOZ is designed to protect significant homes (many of which are historically graded or deemed architecturally significant), preserve the broader heritage value and architectural character and prevent out-of-character development in the area.

Heritage plays a significant role in determining how a property can be altered and buyers should always ask their realtor to verify the zoning of a particular property, what uses are permitted, and what rights they would need to apply for. As a rule of thumb, all alterations to structures older than 60 years are subject to approval in terms of the National Heritage Resources Act.

Anyone wishing to make alterations to a property must submit an application to the council. The application will in turn will be sent to the Pinelands Ratepayers and Heritage Advisory Committee (HAC) for comment. The review board consists of five members, with particular expertise in architecture, landscaping and engineering, and they will assess the application on whether the project is a “contributing” or “non-contributing” member of the HPOZ in its “appropriateness” to the HPOZ’s preservation plan. A guideline is provided by the city on how best to engage with your architect (preferably with heritage experience) and what is permissible in the planning stages.,%20notices,%20tariffs%20and%20lists/HPOZ_1_info_doc.pdf.

Depending on the nature, extent and complexity of the proposal, the plan application is generally likely to go through (a number of or all) the following city approval stages :

  1. Land Use Management (LUM) clearance
    1. LUM checks and verifies that plan complies with Zoning requirements. In the case of Pinelands HPOZ or the building is older than 60 years,  the plan is first sent to
      1. Environment Resource Management (ERM)
      2. Heritage Western Cape (HWC) who will require HAC comment.
      3. LUM zoning clearance.
        1. Pinelands ratepayers
        2. If there are departures
          1. Interested and affected parties are invited to comment through public participation  or advertising
          2. Appeals process. This can take up to 18 months
  2. Structural, Civil and Energy (XA) Clearance
  3. Fire Clearance
  4. Plans Examiner Clearance
  5. Plans Examiner Clearance

These controls prevent developers who want to change their properties with minimal control from, or accountability to existing property owners, with short-term interests in the community whose endeavours, whether good or bad, last a lifetime or more.

Although sometimes planning permissions, processes and heritage regulations are viewed as onerous, historically, property values rise when a neighbourhood becomes an HPOZ as buyers are willing to pay more for properties in areas where change evolves according to established styles and patterns of development.

Dr Shaun Adendorff, Chairman HAC