The City of Cape Town has approved the local neighbourhood plans or local spatial development frameworks (LSDFs) for Bo-Kaap, District Six, and Two Rivers, a collaboration between the City’s Urban Planning and Design Department and local communities.
“Council’s approval of the LSDFs for the Bo-Kaap and District Six in particular, is a historical and momentous occasion for the communities from these areas. For the first time in Cape Town’s history, we now have plans to guide spatial development and land use on a local level for one of our oldest residential neighbourhoods, that being the Bo-Kaap, and for District Six, where beneficiaries are returning to their land after the devastating forced removals of the 1960s,” comments the City’s Deputy Mayor and Mayoral Committee Member for Spatial Planning and Environment, Alderman Eddie Andrews.
The Bo-Kaap is the oldest residential neighbourhood in SA and one of Cape Town’s most iconic areas with its rich history and unique architecture. The LSDF, which recognises that its heritage should be protected and enhanced, takes into consideration the area’s potential in offering tourism and economic opportunities with a focus on the local access and movement and the type of developments that should take place.
“Managing development within such a sensitive heritage area is sometimes a challenge. Given the need to encourage development while providing detailed guidance for dealing with heritage matters, the LSDF has been approved on condition that detailed heritage guidelines be developed and submitted to Council for consideration and approval,” says Alderman Andrews.
District Six LSDF
Re-establishing the community of District Six is one of the most important projects the City is undertaking in collaboration with national government, the District Six community, and other stakeholders.
While the City is not involved in the restitution process, nor the development itself, it is responsible for creating an overall planning vision for District Six. The LSDF that has been approved by Council was drafted and refined in collaboration with the District Six community, and other Capetonians over a period of nearly three years.
The purpose of this spatial plan is to re-establish this once vibrant neighbourhood, to create a sense of belonging, and to establish a multicultural community. Furthermore, to manage urban growth, plan for employment and improve access to economic opportunities.
“The LSDF also focuses on 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. The public realm improvement is where the City intends to invest in creating quality spaces for the District Six residents.”
“On this note, I am pleased to say that we hosted a successful meeting with residents on Saturday, where we presented the proposals for the upgrade of Chapel Street, in the heart of District Six. This is our very first public realm project flowing from our close collaboration with the community of District Six.”
Two Rivers LSDF
The Two Rivers LSDF sets the vision for the area, namely, to intensify the residential, economic, recreation and institutional urban activities through the development of the limited vacant land; and also, to connect the precincts at the confluence of the Liesbeek and Black Rivers.
The plan details the actions and interventions to make the development of this area possible, as well as to materialise the creation of a green park.
Apart from addressing the need for housing and employment opportunities, the LSDF also seeks to enhance and protect the river corridors and open spaces, and heritage resources.
The LSDFs for Bo-Kaap, District Six, and Two Rivers elaborate on and support the spatial development guidelines as set out in the Table Bay District Spatial Development Framework, which is a higher order plan for the greater Table Bay area, and the Cape Town Municipal Spatial Development Framework.