Published in: Cape Town-

City Support Programme in Cape Town

City Support Programme

On 4 February 2016 the African Centre for Cities hosted a day workshop with the City Support Programme and a wide range of research units and academics from the University of Cape Town in order to identify areas of common interest in engaging urban processes. The City Support Programme (CSP) is an initiative of national Treasury aimed at providing implementation support to South African cities, specifically around human settlements, public transport, economic development, and climate resilience and sustainability.

The CSP has been communicating with various units at the university of Cape Town, and working quite closely with ACC as advisors about how to address a range of urban processes. This engagement has largely occurred independently of each other. In order to explore the possibility of capitalising on these connections, the ACC hosted a workshop with the CSP and the following units: The Graduate School of Development Policy and Practice; City & Regional Planning and Construction Economics in the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment; The Centre for Transport Studies; the Energy Research Centre; and the African Climate and Development Initiative.

The purpose of the workshop was to see what points for collaboration could be identified across the implementation priorities for the CSP. The workshop started with a presentation by Prof Edgar Pieterse of the ACC who sketched out the current urban challenges facing South African cities, specifically focusing on the spatial dynamics ‘embedded in the DNA of cities due to the long history of colonial and apartheid planning. He identified urban fragmentation, segregation, and spatial inequality as the primary issues to be addressed. David Savage from the CSP followed by providing an overview of how the CSP works, and how it hopes to address the disjuncture between thinking, policy and implementation at the city scale. Each unit then presented their respective projects and programmes that could produce possible collaboration points. The remainder of the workshop involved identifying possible areas of common interest. The workshop marked the starting point for possible academic - public sector collaboration in fostering sustainable urban change.

For more information, please contact Rike Sitas, Mistra Urban Futures in Cape Town