The City of Cape Town recently held its inaugural online meeting about the spatial vision or Local Spatial Development Framework (LSDF) for District Six.
With approximately ninety attendees, various proposals about the process to be followed in the coming months were made.
The National Department of Rural Development and Land Reform (DRDLR) is responsible for the overall redevelopment of District Six, the restitution process, and the construction of houses for the beneficiaries.
Executive Mayor, Alderman Dan Plato says this joint project with national government carries a significant weight for the recipients of homes in District Six.
“The City plays an integral part in this process through our planning approvals and the underground infrastructure that we are responsible for. We hope the process can move quicker so that more people can experience closure and joy from returning to their old neighbourhood.”
The City of Cape Town is collaborating with its partners in the other spheres of government and pledged its commitment as the recent meeting to work with residents in the months ahead.
“This meeting marked a historical moment for Cape Town as we are coming together to rebuild the community of District Six. I say ‘community’ because a neighbourhood is not made of brick and mortar but it is formed by the people who gather in the streets, who occupy the buildings, who play and socialize in its parks and, who visit each other’s businesses and homes” commented the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Spatial Development and Environment, Alderman Marian Nieuwoudt.
“The purpose of the local neighbourhood plan is to re-establish this once vibrant neighbourhood, to create a sense of belonging, and to establish a multicultural community. This is a huge task, and one we take seriously and with intent and urgency. Today’s meeting marked the beginning of this collaboration, in us coming together to rebuild the future of District Six in a sustainable manner.”
The City of Cape Town’s immediate focus will be on the public realm – the open spaces and the amenities of the future of District Six.
“A community forms over time. We become a community in the places where we meet, mostly outside of our homes. Community happens in the public spaces, in what is often referred to as the public realm. A community is where we recognise each other as passing individuals, but also as one when we come together. It may be hard to imagine the role of community while we are in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, but this too shall pass, and the importance of public open spaces, community and normal social interaction will return.”
“I’m asking residents to start thinking about the public realm – how we can shape and form the future District Six community with public open spaces; what we want these spaces to look like, how we want to use them, and how we want them to connect us with one another, and the other surrounding neighbourhoods,” said Alderman Nieuwoudt.
The documents that were presented at the online meeting is available on the City’s website.
Residents and interested parties are encouraged to please register with the City by sending an email to Districtsix.firstname.lastname@example.org.
“We are looking forward to taking this journey with residents, and to create a neighbourhood at the foot of Table Mountain that is vibrant, beautiful, inclusive, and sustained by a strong local economy,” concluded Alderman Nieuwoudt.