SPEECH BY THE CITY’S EXECUTIVE MAYOR, PATRICIA DE LILLE AT THE CEREMONIAL SIGNING OF SOCIAL HOUSING AGREEMENTS:

 Thank you all for being here today as the City of Cape Town opens another chapter in its efforts to reverse the legacy of apartheid spatial planning. 

 
We need your help.
 
Apartheid not only forced a majority of people of colour out of the inner-city, it also left behind a fragmented and unsustainable city, especially for the vulnerable.
 
Many people of colour were excluded from economic opportunities and to this day many still have to travel long distances to get to work. 
 
Apartheid might be dead but its legacy lives on.
 
As a result, residents and especially our more vulnerable residents are spending as much as 40% of their income on travelling costs.
 
We need to break down the legacy of apartheid in our society and redress the imbalances of the past. This is also important to bring about fairness and opportunity.  
 
The inner-city has become unaffordable due to increased land prices and property market trends.
 
Government cannot tackle this alone and we need public-private partnerships that have proven to be successful with many other housing projects before. 
 
What we aim to achieve with our partners in affordable social housing projects is to ensure that we build an inclusive, integrated city where everyone feels a sense of belonging and where they do not feel isolated because of income disparities.
 
This is one of our key priorities over the next five years: to drive greater integration as outlined in the new five-year Integrated Development Plan (IDP).
 
That is why the adoption of the Organisational Development and Transformation Plan in August 2016 gave us the opportunity to establish the Transport and Urban Development Authority (TDA) in an explicit move to bring the functions of urban planning, formal housing and transport together.
 
The TDA is being used to enable the City to create a more compact and connected city.
 
This spatial transformation will assist us to ensure that we bring people closer to economic opportunities while also providing affordable, inclusive housing located close to public transport nodes. 
 
Densification will also reduce the cost of transport. We must stop this urban sprawl and build more density. 
 
In this regard and in line with our commitment to an integrated city, we have identified several City-owned sites in Salt River, Woodstock and the inner-city for affordable housing development. 
 
So, today our social housing institution partners are not just entering into an agreement with us to build affordable housing, you are also helping this administration build an inclusive city that brings people from all walks of life and all income brackets together.
 
I’m excited that you have decided to join us on this journey to establish living environments that embrace new inclusive and creative solutions that mix housing types and tenure options as well as explore new technologies, designs and alternative building materials.
 
I understand that some of the companies don’t have any housing stock under their management as yet, and as the City we are pleased to be providing an opportunity to emerging businesses to undertake their first development and management of stock and tenancies.  
 
More than half of the companies we’re partnering with are from the Western Cape while others carry a wealth of experience in providing social and affordable housing.
 
Your knowledge will be critical in our efforts to stop to the urban sprawl and building integrated communities that celebrate our diversity and cultures. 
 
We have already partnered with some of these companies to deliver very successful social housing development and rental opportunities in Goodwood. We have also worked together on other projects including one in Heideveld.
 
Without buy-in from developers and business we cannot reverse apartheid spatial planning. This initiative will bring such development right into the urban core.
 
We want to deliver this through a social housing programme that enables access to affordable housing in well-located urban environments.
 
We trust that all of this will be delivered within the prescribed timeframes and we are looking forward to realising this goal with you. 
 
Thank you, baie dankie, enkosi, shukran.