EDEN DISTRICT NEWS - The Eden District council has approved the name change of Eden District municipality to Garden Route District municipality last week.
Although the proposal was met in a positive light by five of the seven B-municipalities (Mossel Bay, Hessequa, George, Bitou and Knysna), the councils of Oudtshoorn and Kannaland were not in favour, reasoning that their municipalities are not considered as part of the Garden Route, but rather the Klein Karoo.
Following a public participation process, the proposal was accepted in Eden council on 5 December.
"The next step will be to inform Western Cape MEC for local government Anton Bredell of council's decision and request to publish a notice about the name change in the Government Gazette," said Eden DM spokesperson Herman Pieters.
The name change is expected to be implemented no later than April 2018.
Eden mayor Memory Booysen said the regional tourism brand will still be known as Garden Route and Klein Karoo and will continue to be marketed in that way.
"By changing our name to Garden Route District municipality does not mean that we see less value in the name Klein Karoo. We see the Klein Karoo as part of the Garden Route," said Booysen.
"When looking at the name 'Eden', it never included the name 'Klein Karoo', but people were still aware of it."
Eden speaker Mark Willemse said the name "Eden" is not familiar to people outside the region and it also did not add any value to tourism in the region, but only created confusion.
"If a person does a Google search for the word 'Eden', it does not even mention anything about the Garden Route or Klein Karoo, but once a person searches for the phrase 'Garden Route', the name 'Klein Karoo' ends up with the search results of Garden Route."
According to Pieters the communication and graphic design team of Eden DM will design the new logo and develop a brand guide to ensure a smooth transition to the new identity.
ARTICLE: MICHELLE PIENAAR, GEORGE HERALD JOURNALIST
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