City of Joburg

Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo

Johannesburg Zoo


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Creating a network of open green spaces is high on the list of measures the Inner City Roadmap outlines for achieving a livable, sustainable inner city.

The R16-million inner city Metro Park
Joburg City Parks and Zoo and the Johannesburg Development Agency opened the R16-million Metro Park in the midst of the commercial and residential hub of Newtown in September 2014.

Meeting, relaxing and exercising outdoors is set to become an increasingly attractive option for Joburg's inner city residents over the coming years, with the recently launched Inner City Roadmap clearly outlining how the City intends to achieve this.

Launched by Executive Mayor Parks Tau on 17 June, the Roadmap provides a comprehensive, long-term strategy for shifting the City's inner city regeneration drive up a gear.

Achieving a sustainable inner city is one of the Roadmap's five main objectives. According to the strategy document, this will require better basic service provision, the promotion of green practices in waste management and water and energy use, and the establishment of a reliable public transport network with rationalised routes for cars and taxis and pleasant walking and cycling pathways.

It will also require a network of green public spaces connected with safe pathways and fitted out for exercising or relaxing in the open.

The document notes that the supply of green open space in the inner city "is entirely inadequate, offering little space to capture stormwater run-off, sequester carbon emissions, accommodate biodiversity or provide for the recreational needs of the ever increasing inner city residential population.

"A priority in this Roadmap remains the need to develop a network of open spaces in the inner city and a large-scale park or series of parks to serve the local and visiting population."

At the same time, the City will continue with its progamme of upgrading existing parks, with five inner city parks prioritised for upgrading over the next five years. To ensure the ongoing maintenance of these spaces, partnerships with community groupings and the private sector will be forged.

The inner city environment will become more walkable as the shift away from private transport kicks in, and more liveable with the consequent decrease in air pollution. Sewer pollution will be reduced through improved urban drainage systems, while pump stations will be set up prevent the leakage of contaminated water or acid mine drainage into inner city water systems.

Food gardening on inner city balconies and rooftops will also be encouraged through a concerted programme.

Besides sustainability, the Roadmap outlines a strategy for creating an inner city that is well-governed, clean and safe, productive, and inclusive.

The overall vision is of "a place of opportunity … a well-governed, safe, clean and sustainable inner city, which offers high-quality, sustainable services; supports vibrant economic activity; and provides a welcoming place for all residents, migrants, commuters, workers, traders, investors and tourists".