Race and Class

This domain rests on the premise that spatial development in South African urban areas is largely polarised by class and race. Adebayo (2012) lamented the proliferation of such spatial development, which she attributed to economic forces at work. It is therefore not surprising that 80% of the population that is satisfied with housing and its associated supporting infrastructure is mostly the white population, while the least satisfied are the Blacks, who ironically, are the majority. Unfortunately, this polarisation seems to be growing as shown by the emergence of gated housing communities with access to high-quality infrastructure.

The increase in community protests and violence among poor urban householders are indicators of poor well-being, governance, and overall failure to address this growing gap. From a housing perspective, the government’s inclusive policies such as the Social Housing policy (2008); The Framework for an Inclusionary Housing Policy (2007), and the Breaking New Grounds (2004) were all enacted to address this spatial inequity. The National Development Plan’s (Vision 2030) intention to build urban communities with a focus on spatial integration, sustainability, efficiency, and balance is a realisation and pointer to this growing gap that cities are experiencing – hence the need to investigate dynamics at work to build inclusive cities.