The Vision

The  New  Cities  New  Economies  thesis  is  our  generation’s  vision  for  the  economic  revolution,  which  will  radically  transform  and  advance  South  Africa  and  Africa’s economy.  It  is  a  proposition  that  is  aimed  at  fuelling  the  long  overdue  economic  growth and transformation of our society. It is indeed a Grand Plan, which will not only  serve  South  Africa  but  has  potential  to  reverberate  across  the  entire  African  continent. This Grand Plan is the promise of the South Africa we yearn for, the Africa we want. 

Essentially the vision advocates for massive urbanization in South Africa and Africa, which will be attained through the deliberate planning and building of new cities, ex nihilo, that is, in totally  new  spaces,  in  a  manner  that  will  drastically  redefine  apartheid’s  spatial  legacies,  which  are  sustaining  economic  inequality,  poverty  and  huge unemployment.  New  cities  herald  new  economies,  new  economies  yield  jobs  and  empowerment and therefore destroy both poverty and apartheid economic legacies. The new cities should have a symbiotic relationship with the economy. As new cities herald new economies; new economies will anchor and sustain new cities.

The vision portends the creation of egalitarian cities. In a nutshell, egalitarian cities are  justiciable  cities,  they  will  usher  in  spatial  justice,  racial  justice,  gender  justice,  class  justice,  social  justice,  economic  justice,  legal  justice,  educational  justice, culture,  heritage  and  spiritual  justice,  safety  and  security,  youth  empowerment,  peace and harmony for all. Egalitarian cities will free poor people from the shackles of subjugation, abject poverty, underdevelopment and dependency.

These cities will embrace the features of cities as encapsulated in the Integrated Urban  Development  Framework,  which  is  that  they  should  be:  “Livable,  safe,  resource-­efficient…and  socially  integrated,  economically  inclusive  and  globally competitive, where residents actively participates in urban life” (IUDF, 2016:38).