Workshop held to discuss proposed Inner City Local Area plan

A successful workshop was held this week where experts in the Built Environment field (Town Planning and Architecture) were invited to comment on the proposed Inner-City Local Area Plan. A parallel Inner-City Regeneration Strategy was also discussed.

The workshop held at the Moses Mabhida Stadium saw a robust discussion that took place between City officials and the Built Environment experts who deliberated on the future of Durban in terms of planning design.

While there were areas of the plan the experts suggested to be reviewed, there was a general consensus that the plan would definitely improve the current state of the inner-city.

The underway Inner City Local Area Plan is a high level plan to inform the detail precinct plans, Inner City Regeneration Strategy and an Implementation Plan, which will be developed once the Local Area Plan is finalized. Ultimately the Local Area Plan aims to ensure the inner-city of Durban will be a vibrant, connected, walkable  and integrated city Centre to provide suitable environment for  economic, residential, sporting and leisure opportunities for all.

Including the recently held workshop, there have been 35 stakeholder engagement and communications meetings and workshops held to-date. Further engagements are planned in the New Year including an open day in March to obtain comments on the Local Area Plan as well as another major workshop to discuss the regeneration plan. The precinct plans are expected to be completed in May next year. The regeneration plan is anticipated to be completed by the third quarter of 2016 and will then shift to an implementation focus.

A major carnival is planned for May next year with the intention of creating a paradigm shift in the way the Inner-City is perceived and used as a reference point.  The Inner-City Master Plan will be launched at the carnival to better illustrate the changes planned for Durban while at the same time activating the Inner-City precinct.

The launch will also serve as a signature of the administrative and political revival of the City Hall as a key Durban City hub of interaction and democratic decision making. This event will be the catalyst to activate continuous dialogue, collaboration and active interaction between the city, businesses and communities. At these events City leaders and officials will be promoting Durban’s diverse culture, encouraging strong public-private sector involvement while also mobilising resources to facilitate the creation and constructive management of the urban realm in the City.

The public is encouraged to have their input by visiting the projects webpage on the City’s website and leave their comments on the proposed plan.

The website is also updated regularly with any new developments in the plan. In the same workshop, Acting Deputy City Manager for Economic Development and Planning Musa Mbhele said “professionals in the field were invited to the workshop to provide input and suggestions on the plan. This is your opportunity to have your say. This is your City, we are building a City for the future generations. We want you to interact fully with us. Suggestions will be taken into consideration,” He also referred to the Inner-City Rejuvenation Strategy as process to tackle issues of crime and grime in the inner-city as well as traffic congestion, derelict buildings and water and electricity interruptions.

Residents can click here to find out more about the project and leave their comments: