Cape Town, South Africa — Advisory Services Panel
September 4, 2015
PANELS FOR SOUTH AFRICAN CITIES
The ULI Advisory Services program has conducted a series of panels in the Republic of South Africa. These panels have been conducted at the request of the World Bank in cooperation with the National Treasury of South Africa. These panels are provided to the National Treasury and to participating metropolitan areas that draw on the World Bank’s global experience and network of urban experts. The National Treasury’s Cities’ Support Programme (CSP) is a unit within the National Treasury that provides technical assistance to cities in South Africa. That assistance is aimed at helping cities manage the built environment in a way that promotes economic growth, job creation, access to basic services, environmental sustainability, and public accountability.
Voortrekker Road Corridor
Date: November 10–13, 2014
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
Sponsor: The World Bank and the South African National Treasury
Subject Area: Urban Regeneration in the Voortrekker Road Corridor
Panel Chair: Patrick Phillips, Global Chief Executive Officer of the Urban Land Institute
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Background and Panel Assignment
The city of Cape Town’s Spatial and Urban Design Department (SPUD) is in the midst of developing a strategic plan for the Voortrekker Road Corridor (VRC), an approximately 82-square-kilometer (32 sq mi) corridor located between Salt River Circle and Stikland Bridge in the central core of the city. Bounded to the north by the N1 highway, Voortrekker Road is one of the city’s oldest transportations routes and the site of much of Cape Town’s early commercial development. The VRC of today is the product of decades-long urban development. As Cape Town’s highway system continued to develop, the area around the VRC changed. No longer the bustling commercial hub it once was, the VRC saw many of its commercial and industrial areas decline as some more established businesses relocated to more modern developments located closer to the N1 near highway off-ramps and junctions. Despite this decline, opportunity still exists to generate employment and create dense developments located in tandem with transit nodes.
The sponsor, a team composed of the National Treasury’s Cities’ Support Programme and the World Bank, working with SPUD, requested that the Urban Land Institute conduct an Advisory Services panel focusing on the VRC and its subareas to the north and south.
The panel was asked to respond to the following:
- Review the current project process and methodology for the VRC strategy.
- What land use changes or other interventions could be catalysts for regeneration in the VRC context?
- What public sector actions can help leverage catalytic development and interventions?
Summary of Recommendations
The panel completed a comprehensive review of SPUD’s process and methodology to date and developed key feedback and recommendations, including the following:
- SPUD’s diagnostic work is high-quality, comprehensive, and technically sound.
- Additional market data and community input would add great value to the work already completed.
- It is not too early to plan and begin a community engagement process to help clarify goals and objectives, to solidify political support for the planning process, and to begin to generate some private sector confidence in and enthusiasm about new development in the study area.
- The city-led planning process can be more simply and more effectively communicated to decision makers and to the public.
- It would be appropriate to begin building a framework for plan implementation.
- Close coordination should be ensured with similar planning efforts now underway for the Metro South East Integration Zone, the southeast corridor study.
Partnerships are critical. Universities, major employers, and other public agencies at the federal and provincial levels, which often are major landowners and influence policy decisions, are important and should be included in the planning process. The major opportunity areas in the corridor, for which short-, medium-, and long-term development potential should be identified, are in Bellville, the Tygerberg Hospital complex, and Wingfield.