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Spatial transformation: what Cape Town can learn from Medellin

September 22, 2016 @ 11:00 am - 12:30 pm

South African cities today continue to be marked by spatial fragmentation, low density sprawl and highly unequal land distribution patterns.  Cape Town as a city is plagued by the same inefficient, fragmented and exclusionary spatial patterns inherited from Apartheid. In light of this, the ACC has embarked on a new research project which focuses on the potential of the Voortrekker Road Corridor (VRC) and specifically the Western Area (including Maitland, Kensington and Facreton) to bring about spatial transformation.  This work is supported by the French Development Agency (AFD).

One of the components of this research project is a bi- monthly seminar series which will draw academics, officials and other practitioners into conversation about a number of pertinent topics. These include for example: unpacking what spatial transformation means in Cape Town, the role of corridor projects in facilitating this transformation, the potential and challenges of transit-oriented development and the role of government policy  instruments and programmes like the Urban Development Zone (UDZ) tax incentive to support social and spatial integration.

To kick off the seminar series, Francesco Orsini, a visiting researcher from Colombia, will present a case study of Medellin’s Social Urbanism” programme. This will provide key insights and a useful basis for future deliberations about the nature and dynamics of interventions to transform Cape Town’s spatial form.