BY BRYNLEY VAN AARDT
For the better part of a year, rumours have been circulating about whether the Drostdy Square, commonly known as “The Square”, will be closing. Those rumours have now been proven true.
After receiving most of the approval required from Stellenbosch Town Planning and Stellenbosch Municipality, Abacus Development Company is waiting for the final approval to move forward with the development of The Square.
The Square is home to many prominent Stellenbosch night clubs such as Terrace, Tin Roof and Catwalk which have been frequented by Stellenbosch University (SU) students for many years.
Despite a petition called Save the Square, started by SU student, Daniel Schroder, it appears that Abacus will continue its plans to develop the Square. The petition garnered 4458 signatures.
Bernabe de le Bat, Manager of Spatial Planning, Heritage & Environment at Stellenbosch Municipality, said, “As far as I know, Heritage Western Cape has approved and now it is up to Abacus if they wish to continue.”
Petrus Erasmus, a SU Masters in Business Administration student and project manager for the Drostdy Square Development, says that they are waiting for approval of their departure application which allows them to change the current land rights from commercial to mixed rights.
“We want to use the land for commercial, for apartments as well as hotel rights,” Erasmus said.
The proposed plans hope to see fruition in the middle of 2021, with a new building being built where the clubs currently are, containing a hotel, office space as well as new restaurants.
Gian Brink, the manager of Catwalk, a club facing closure, said, “I think everything depends on when the planning for the development will be finalised. Till then we should be able to trade. To relocate will be very difficult in terms of the cost, finding a new building and approval of liquor license. We need everyone’s support in securing the future of Catwalk.”