Launch of the Economic Areas Management Programme (‘ECAMP’), Cape Town

Rob McGaffin, an embedded researcher from the Cape Town Platform’s Knowledge Transfer Programme, has spent three years working with City Officials in the Department of Spatial Planning and Urban Design developing the Economic Areas Management Programme - ECAMP.

ECAMP is a research and policy support initiative which tracks and routinely assesses the market performance and long-term growth potential of over sixty business precincts across the metropolitan region, giving the City insight into local business dynamics, opportunities and inefficiencies which can be used to inform an appropriate area-based strategy and practical local interventions. Historically, spatial planning initiatives to address the city’s inequitable and inefficient structure have been undermined by a lack of understanding of the economic forces driving the city’s development. Drawing on City and private data, ECAMP has begun to rectify this, which has enabled the City to firstly, design interventions that are responsive to local contexts and secondly, be able to engage with private investors and developers from a far more informed position.  ECAMP was launched by Mayor of Cape Town Patricia De Lille on Wednesday, 11 June 2014.

ECAMP is a decision-making support tool for spatial planning at the city scale, and uses open source data to advance evidence-based planning. In collaboration with academics, economists and property brokers, the City of Cape Town has developed a diagnostic model which collates a sizeable and under-utilised pool of administrative, proprietary and open-source data into actionable information. The tool has been accessible for use across the City of Cape Town for a number of months and has been used to build growth management and transport strategies for the city as well as to identify where public funding should be prioritised in the city. Now, ECAMP has been launched as a tool open to the public for use. Speaking to delegates at the South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA) conference, where the project was launched, the Mayor of Cape Town noted that ‘In a data-driven age, this kind of analytical tool will amplify the information upon which [investors] make [their] investment decisions and could lead to an even more sophisticated property sector that sources all possible data streams to drive the market forward’.

Read about the ECAMP tool

Read the speech by the City´s Executive Mayor, Patricia De Lille

Read about the Knowledge Transfer Programme