Moving towards 'humanising' housing : a closer look at the issues surrounding housing provision in South Africa

Cornelissen, Celeste (2001-12)

Thesis ((MS en S)--Stellenbosch University, 2001.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: After many years of fragmentation and inequity, the new housing policy envisages "the establishment and maintenance of habitable, stable and sustainable public and private environments to ensure viable households and communities in areas allowing convenient access to economic opportunities, and to health, educational and social amenities" (Housing White Paper, 1994:21). It appears, however, given the size of the housing backlog (currently estimated by the Housing Minister at 2,8 million units) and the general form housing provision has taken, that the overall vision of what should be accomplished through housing development have taken the backseat to rapid housing production in the country. In practice, inhabitants of recently undertaken housing projects are to a large extent still denied access to the city and its opportunities. Recent housing projects reflect government's view that the solution to the housing problem lies in the packaged production of physical housing units, choosing to define the housing problem only in terms of "housing production and technical and engineering efficiency " (Noero, 2000: 1). This approach have been described by Noero as being naive and criticised for its ability to be counterproductive by failing to address the full spectrum of needs in the lives of people. The limited definition of housing further stands in opposition to the extensive definition of housing found in policy documents. This study, with the help of a case study of one such housing project, explored some of the dominant issues surrounding current housing provision in South Africa, and the problems associated with it. It sought to establish that current housing provision is far removed from the overall aims and objectives set out for housing development by the new housing policy. This study considered some ways of bringing housing delivery closer to the vision of housing as an engine of growth and change.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Na vele jare van fragmentasie en ongelykheid, voorsien die nuwe behuisingsbeleid "die vestiging en onderhoud van bewoonbare, stabiele en volhoubare private en publieke omgewings vir die skepping van lewensvatbare huishoudings en gemeenskappe in gebiede wat maklike toegang verseker tot ekonomiese geleeenthede, en tot gesondheids-, opvoedings- en sosiale geriewe" (Witskrif op Behuising, 1994:21). Dit blyk egter, in die lig van die geweldige behuisingsagterstand (wat tans deur die Minister van Behuising op 2,8 miljoen eenhede beraam word) en die vorm wat behuisingsvoorsiening tans aanneem, dat die versnelde produksie van huise geprioritiseer word ten koste van die visie van wat behuisingsvoorsiening in Suid-Afrika eintlik moet bereik. In die praktyk word die inwoners van behuisingprojekte wat onlangs onderneem is, steeds tot 'n groot mate ontneem van die stad en sy geleenthede. Onlangse behuisingsprojekte reflekteer die siening van die regering dat die oplossing tot die behuisingsprobleem in die produksie van fisiese wooneenhede lê, en vervolgens die definisie van behuising slegs in terme van "die produksie daarvan en die gangbaarheid in terme van tegniese en ingenieursaspekte" (Noero, 2000: 1). Hierdie benadering word deur Noero beskryf as naief en word gekritiseer vir die vermoë daarvan om teenproduktief te wees deur nie die volle spekrum van behoeftes in mense se lewens in ag te neem nie. Hierdie beperkte definisie van behuising staan verder in teenstelling met die uitgebreide definisie van behuising wat in beleidsdokumente aangetref word. In die studie, met behulp van 'n gevallestudie van een so 'n behuisingsprojek, word die dominante kwessies rondom behuisingsvoorsiening in Suid-Afrika en die probleme daar rondom, verken. Daar word gepoog om te illusteer dat huidige behuisingsvoorsiening verwyderd is van die vernaamste doelstellings van die nuwe behuisingsbeleid. Die studie het maniere oorweeg om behuisingsvoorsiening nader te bring aan die visie van behuising as 'n katalisator vir groei en verandering.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/52346