Municipal Institute Of LearningMILE - Municipal Institute Of Learning
City to rethink public spaces
The Municipality in partnership United Cities and Local Governments, UN Habitat and the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs hosted an international learning exchange on public spaces that challenges the way open public spaces are planned and utilised. About 200 municipal practitioners from cities around the world gathered to share knowledge and experience and to learn how to creatively make urban public spaces more people centred and vibrant.

Taxi ranks, CBD areas, sports precinct, parks and gardens, the beachfront, bus stops and train stations are all examples of open public spaces.

Mayor James Nxumalo welcomed delegates. He said, “Public spaces are much more than physical locations. They bring people together to form neighbourhood bonds and strengthen a sense of belonging amongst community members as well as improve their quality of life. A paradigm shift is required to transform public spaces into great places in which people enjoy a high quality of life, good health.”

City Manager, Sbu Sithole, said, “There is a symbiotic relationship between the city and the community. No public space can exist without the community and communities cannot exist without public spaces. Therefore this learning exchange was held as a culmination of our effort to improve the quality of life for our citizens by initiating a process of changing mindsets to improve and shape our public spaces into places that are vibrant, safe and meet the needs of the community. The learnings from this process need to be incorporated into the municipality’s plans and programmes going forward. ”​ ​

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