Two-tier governance for mixed-use and large-scale sectional title schemes

Van der Merwe, C. G. ; Paddock, Graham (2008-12)

CITATION: Van Der Merwe, C. G. & Paddock, G. 2008. Two-tier governance for mixed-use and large-scale sectional title schemes. South African Law Journal, 125(3):573-591.

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With rapidly growing South African urbanization, mixed-use developments are recognized as the most viable utilization of high-density urban space. In specialized sectional title schemes consisting of one or more multi-unit ownership buildings, there is an increasing need to separate the various components of the scheme according to user and to apply the rules of sectional title separately to each component. In a scheme that comprises a commercial component, for example offices and residential units, there is no reason why all the members of the scheme should be responsible for the maintenance of a lift that serves only a particular component. Similarly, owners of commercial units in a mixed-use scheme should not depend on the co-operation of the other owners if they wish to make rules applying to the toilets used by their clients. Moreover, there is no reason why owners of every component of the building or buildings should not have a separate budget to cover their own expenses. Singapore strata title legislation has tried to accommodate these inevitable clashes of interests which ultimately result in disharmonious sectional title communities by introducing a two-tier management structure consisting of a main management body administering general matters and two or more subsidiary management bodies administering the affairs of a particular user group. The aim of this paper is to consider whether this unique system could be adopted as a model for introducing a two-tier governance system in South Africa.

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