South African urbanisation after apartheid

SOURCE: TRIALOG: A Journal for Planning and Building in the Third World
OUTPUT TYPE: Journal Article
TITLE AUTHOR(S): A.Todes, C.Cross, P.Kok, M.Wentzel, J.A.Van Zyl
DEPARTMENT: Democracy, Governance and Service Delivery (DGSD), Human and Social Capabilities (HSC)
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 6749
HANDLE: 20.500.11910/3869

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Under apartheid, the movement and settlement of the majority black people in South Africa was highly constrained. A complex web of policies attempted to retain large parts of the black population within 'homeland' areas reserved for their occupation, and to limit their movement to the cities. These homeland areas however were mainly spatially marginal and poor thus policies were unable to contain movement to cities over the long term, and by the mid 1980s they had broken down as people streamed to cities. Nevertheless, the spatial disjunctures at national and regional scales between where large numbers of black people live, and places of growth and employment, have proved remarkably persistent, many years after apartheid. This paper draws on existing studies to provide an overview of the main urbanisation trends post-apartheid, and to explain some of the key underlying dynamics.