Tariffbanner 2017

IDP Banner



itl click thru




emergency blue

011 375 5911; 10177

general blue

PAIA, 2000 (Act 2 of 2000) 

home > News Update
other city news
City’s plans to densify Jozi’s neighbourhoods gain traction Print E-mail
28 February 2017

We need to bring back that neighbourhood feeling and do away with these huge brick walls where we live in isolation,” Tebogo Fenyane of the City of Johannesburg’s Department of Urban Planning and Development said on Saturday February 25.

“Opening up our neighbourhoods promotes safety in that there are eyes on the street and a sense of community,” he added.

Fenyane was speaking at the Brixton Recreation Centre during one of the public engagement sessions his department is rolling out on the creation of Development Corridors – formerly known as the Corridors of Freedom – and how best to fast-track developments along the Rea Vaya Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system routes, the city’s key transport arteries.

Neighbourhoods on the Louis Botha Road and Empire Perth Development Corridors are part of the pilot project of the densification initiatives being planned by the City.

A series of public consultation meetings were held at the Marks Park Sporting Complex in Emmarentia and the Brixton Recreation Centre throughout the week to introduce Special Development Zones (SDZs), a densification model aimed at ensuring that the Development Corridors vision of sustainable densification of retail and housing is achieved. Similar meetings have already been held in Orange Grove.

SDZs are based on an Urban Design Masterplan adopted from the BRT Spatial Development Framework detailing planned land uses and development parameters seeking to encourage interaction with the street to promote the creation of safe, attractive and desirable neighbourhoods.

The City is proposing to establish the pilot SDZs along current and future BRT routes and near the city centre. These are Orange Grove Precinct, Brixton Precinct and the Knowledge Precinct.

“These areas are earmarked for rapid densification and development. But the SDZ programme also sets out to be inclusive and allow everyone to be part of the redevelopment process at different scales; to develop in such a way that the historical character of the neighbourhood is preserved as much as possible and to promote inclusivity to ensure the existing close-knit community benefits from the densification of the neighbourhood,” said Fenyane.

He said SDZs would further encourage development in a manner that would accommodate sub-economic development patterns and promote the neighbourhood’s economy.

“There are models that developers and owners who are keen to develop can consider that will retain the character of the neighbourhood while being able to densify. Approach us if you have property along these corridors that you want to develop and we can guide you on how best to develop it,” said Fenyane.

“The SDZ guidelines are aimed at creating appealing neighbourhoods that are highly functional and liveable,” said Fenyane.

One of the property owners who showed keenness to get involved was Blaire Atwood of Ferndale.

“I really want to develop my property to ensure it is utilised to its potential. I am interested in how best to do this without taking away from the property’s old-world charm,” she said.

A Westdene resident said he was concerned about how the neighbourhood was being overrun by high-density student and other accommodation, with more planned despite inadequate traffic and service infrastructure.

“There is very limited access into and out of Westdene during peak hour traffic. This is going to get worse as more and more people move in here. Our sewage system is another concern. With the existing infrastructure crumbling and already taking incredible strain, what will happen in a few years’ time with the influx of people that will come as a result of massive development? Let’s fix our basics before getting too big for our boots,” he stated.

Salim Ebrahim, who owns properties in Brixton and Jan Hofmeyr, welcomed the proposed housing models as these sought to address the housing demand, while being economical to develop.

“I want to develop and densify my properties but I don’t want to over-capitalise. I like the housing models being proposed in this SDZ programme. They are practical and economical models that suit what I’m looking for,” he said.

Bookmark and Share
Last Updated on 10 March 2017