Municipal Institute Of LearningMILE - Municipal Institute Of Learning
City wastes no time in implementing innovative public space projects
​In June this year the United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) Committee on Urban Planning hosted a highly successful international learning exchange on reimagining public spaces, held in partnership with the eThekwini Municipality through the MILE and Imagine Durban programs. One of the key recommendations emanating from this action learning event was the need for local government practitioners to be bold, experiment and try new things. In heeding this call, the City wasted in no time in doing just that. As part of an exciting activation program initiated during the UIA Congress, eThekwini’s architecture department spear-headed the Dr Pixey ka Seme Linear Park project.
 
By redefining the perception of the inner city as an economic, social and cultural centre and emphasizing its value through its diversity, a new wave of architectural renewal is hoped to be inspired. The City’s Inner City Renewal Team has activated Step One of the project vision for a pedestrian priority zone along Dr Pixely ka Seme. An exhibition detailing the project and outlining the plans for a 400-metre stretch of Durban’s inner city greened and repurposed, it will showcase what is possible with the creation of a high quality public space for people who live and work in the City to relax, exercise and play.
 
In showing its commitment to public spaces, the city leadership team comprising of the City Manager and his Deputy City Managers are holding their weekly team meeting in the linear park – right in the downtown main street. Exciting new projects that celebrate public space in the city is also on the cards. As eThekwini holds the position of chair of the international Strategic Planning Committee, it is hoped that this move inspires leadership from other cities internationally.
 
Keywords: Imagine Durban, Public Spaces, UCLG
 

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