DAG’s comment and presentation on the city of Cape Town’s Human Settlements Sector Plan

❗ [DAG’S COMMENT AND PRESENTATION ON THE CITY OF CAPE TOWN’S HUMAN SETTLEMENTS SECTOR PLAN] 📄❗

On the 3rd of March 2022, DAG met with around 50 community partners and other interested parties to discuss the City of Cape Town’s first draft of the Integrated Human Settlements Sector Plan (IHSP). This plan sets out the City’s strategy for housing delivery over the next five years (2022 – 2027).

The draft Sector Plan describes a key shift in human settlements development for Cape Town: that is, from now onwards, the City will prioritise their rapid land release or otherwise called site-and-service programme. This signifies a move away from providing built “RDP/BNG”-style houses to people on the housing waiting list, and instead to providing these people with plots of land connected to bulk infrastructure and services.

While the elderly, people with disabilities, child-headed households and military veterans will still be prioritised for receiving completed houses, the remainder of people on the housing waiting list will only receive “serviced sites”. This new policy direction will have a huge impact on thousands of people on both the CoCT’s (+350 000) and Western Cape Department of Human Settlement’s (+600 000) housing waiting lists.

During the Community Dialogue, the DAG team presented their thoughts on the draft plan and identified several key concerns with the draft as it currently stands, and this list of concerns was added to by the community participants.

Some of the biggest concerns arising from the Community Dialogue are the following:

Firstly, there is a lack of detail on where the “serviced sites” provided will be located. DAG is concerned that these will mainly be on the edges of the city, far away from resources and opportunities. Furthermore, there is not much detail on how people are supposed to access the necessary funding or skills to build on these sites, or how/if the state will provide support in the building process. Finally, there has been very little public or civil society involvement in drawing up this draft Sector Plan – when and how will people have a chance to influence their own development? Is the City shifting the responsibility for providing housing on to residents, without any support or consultation?

Please see the link below for the presentation DAG made at the Community Dialogue on the draft IHSP and for the final submission DAG made to the City of Cape Town to comment on the plan.

Join the conversation on this issue – contact your ward councilor with any concerns you may have, and get in touch with us to stay updated on the matter!