DW AngolaLearning from the Alexandra Township Renewal Project

Learning from the Alexandra Township Renewal Project

Wednesday, 16 October, 2013
This section is a part of: 
Urban Debates

During October 2013, DW’s director had the opportunity of visiting the Alexandra Renewal Project (ARP) in Johannesburg with Julian Baskin and a group of visitors invited by Cities Alliance. Julian Baskin had taken over as the planner and Chief Executive Officer of the Alex Project in 2005 shortly after leaving Angola where he had collaborated with us on the Luanda Urban Poverty Program.

The Alexandra Renewal Project was awarded UN Habitat’s Scroll of Honour in 2009 as an international best practice in urban renewal. The project is a key component of the South African government’s approach to addressing urbanisation and housing challenges and comprises the integrated development of an area grappling with economic, social, and physical challenges. To date, the ARP has seen over 7,000 families relocated from the banks of Jukskei – a polluted local river - to settlements where living conditions are better.

Click here to view the ARP Presentation.


Participatory Planning & Alexandra Development Forum

Wednesday, 16 October, 2013
On 17 November 2001, community stakeholders established the Alexandra Development Forum (ADF) as a formal and legal structure aimed at promoting broad-based community participation in the project. The various stakeholders including civil society organisations as well as community members felt that they had not been included in the Alexandra Urban Renewal Project planning. The Alexandra Urban...

Alexandra Township's Social Housing

Wednesday, 16 October, 2013
At the inception of ARP the Greater Alexandra township had roughly 90000 housing structures including old Alexandra and the relatively new areas like the East Bank, the Far East Bank, Marlboro Industrial, Wynberg, Kew and Marlboro Gardens. Out of these housing structures 6000 were old bonded houses, 500 were new houses, 52000 were backyard structures, 1800 were hostel rooms, 1 490 were flats,...

Old Alexandra Upgrading and Slum Removal

Wednesday, 16 October, 2013
The Alexander Renewal Project – urban upgrading and slum removal program includes schools refurbishment, road construction, skills development centres for local employment development, backyard rental accommodation improvement and the removal of shack dwellings from the environmental risky river flood-plain. The project is charged with upgrading the living conditions and human development...

History of Alexandra Township

Wednesday, 16 October, 2013
Reading the history of Alexandra Township (a name used by the apartheid government to describe a black settlement), one cannot but realise how easy it is for a human tragedy to occur – all it needs is the combination of a mass movement of poor rural families to the city; short sighted, inadequate, local government, and a misguided national government – to destroy the lives of ordinary citizens....

Visit to Alexandra Township

Wednesday, 16 October, 2013
Julian Baskin, has since joined the Cities Alliance in 2009 as a Sr. Urban Specialist. He said that “The success of the Alex Project is in part due to the alignment of interest between the national, provincial, and local government levels,” As a direct result of the project, almost three quarters of the residents now have access to water and sanitation and 88 percent enjoy safe electricity. The...

Watch "Alexandra My Alexandra" Online

Friday, 15 March, 2013
Alexandra, My Alexandra, directed by Norman Maake, is a 6 part historical documentary TV series on the history of Johannesburg’s Alexandra township that that aired on the South African Broadcast Corp (SABC1) starting March 17, 2014. The launch was timed to coincide with the centenary celebrations, marking 100 years since Alexandra’s first freehold plots were sold to Africans by Herbert Papenfus...