Car-free on Bree: Open Streets in Cape Town

Cape Town’s Bree Street was closed to cars on Sunday for Open Streets, which aims to change the way that streets are used and perceived. UrbanAfrica’s photo gallery shows how citizens reimagined the urban terrain.

Looking forward: Lagos 2015

With elections coming up in February 2015, it’s hard to get a sense of 2015 Lagos. But there are some hints towards what will take priority,

The urban land question: Cape Town’s stalemate

A reflection on ‘The Urban Land Question,’ published in The People’s Law Journal, Issue 2 – a call for radical policy and action towards enabling equitable spatial integration?

We are all Marikana

What started as a rally for economic justice in Philippi East on Saturday, August 16, the date marking the second anniversary of the Marikana Massacre at Lonmin mine, ended as another struggle over housing in the contentious city of Cape Town. The rally was a call to action from organisations, trade unions, and social movements […]

Roads unsafe for pedestrians in African cities

Africa has the highest road fatality rates in the world for pedestrians, according to the World Health Organization report on pedestrian safety. The proportion of pedestrians killed in relation to other road users is 38 percent on the continent, compared to a global average of 22 percent. Data recorded in different African cities speaks for […]

The man next to the governor: how a police state ruined a city

In June of 2013 a group of heritage activists, architects, and concerned citizens organized a protest outside the Cairo governorate regarding the speedy deterioration of historic Cairo. The historic city had been suffering for years but since 2011 the process of deterioration had increased to an unprecedented pace with new constructions rising in the small plots between registered buildings and with architectural details disappearing from buildings daily.

Gangs target children in Cape Town

The proliferation of gang violence in working class suburbs of Cape Town requires collaborative intervention – and fast.

Reflections on African cities: lessons from the SA Geographer’s conference

At the first Urban Geography session at the Society for South African Geographers conference, held last week, three fascinating papers addressed new forms of urban governance. Two authors, Di Scott and Sue Parnell (where Chris Albertyn and Jo Beall were co-authors) looked at Durban in different ways while Evance Mwathunga reflected on Lilongwe. In the […]

Carbon emissions could become taxing for big South African polluters

To cut greenhouse gas emissions and help the country transition toward a low-carbon economy, South Africa has proposed introducing a carbon tax, starting in 2016. South Africa generates close to 90 percent of its electricity from coal-fired power plants and is the 12th highest emitter of greenhouse gas carbon dioxide from the consumption of energy. […]

Residents dismayed by poor workmanship at Pelican Park

Rahat* and his family recently moved into their new state-subsidised house in Pelican Park, on the edge of Grassy Park in Cape Town, from an informal settlement in Ottery. He has three children but only his youngest lives with him. The bedroom designated for the children stands empty. The entire house, in fact, is still […]