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The EcoCity Concept

Such co-responsibility is essential for any successful development plan. “Government as government alone would never be able to do this. Government working alone can never address the great needs of our people,” says the mayor. The Johannesburg EcoCity programme is located within the Department of Development Planning, Transport and Environment. This is an excellent place within which to house such a programme as it cuts across all aspects of development.

“The concept of the EcoCity looks at development in a different way, a way that allows us to address both economic growth and ecological sustainability at the same time,” says Flora Mokgohloa, the Director of Environment in the Department. In particular she is pleased with the way the programme promotes women when jobs are created and the focus on the youth is of paramount importance to the City.

But EcoCity has not only assisted the council in charting the way for a new development paradigm: “The City has taken on board all the EcoCity ideas and concepts in its policy development, for instance in the City’s Sustainable Development Strategy,” says Mokgohloa.

The big challenge facing the council is how to roll out the programme in other areas of the City. With so many development imperatives and so many disadvantaged areas, the task is enormous. The council is looking at the Integrated Development Planning Process (IDP) as one of the best tools to do this. “Ensuring that the programme is integrated within the objectives of the IDP will be the best way to ensure that sustainable development is carried through the council and its strategies and actions,” says Mokgohloa. The big challenge facing the council is how to roll out the programme in other areas of the City. With so many development imperatives and so many disadvantaged areas, the task is enormous.

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