The Flexibility of Urban Planning Policy, Processes and Outcomes in Response to Cultural Diversity

Ramahlo, Angeline
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University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg
The system of government that regulate planning policy and processes, under which most planners are required to work, tend to obstruct the efficiency and efficacy of the planning process. Notwithstanding rising criticism, planning remains a largely technocratic process that is exorbitantly concerned with “procedure” and technocratic bureaucratic processes. Despite criticisms of planning, the manner in which land use management is regulated is still processed in terms of bureaucratic procedures that are guided by rigid rules and regulation which sanction for very little scrutiny from the public (Taylor, 2007). Government initiatives are often met with criticism and resistance from the community, owing to the fact that government does not follow thorough consultative processes and that various programmes are simply “forced down communities throats”. Are there ways in which the participatory process can be improved given the bureaucratic processes and constraints that municipal planners have to work under? Can synergy and compromises be solicited amongst the different cultural settings that coexist within the cities? A case in point is the Chinese community located in the suburb of Cyrildene that has experienced a rapid change in land uses that are occurring outside the bounds of the applicable planning regulatory frameworks of the City of Johannesburg.
Planning Honours Report 2015, Wits University
planning regulation, planning processes, community participation, state bureaucracy, cultural diversity
Ramahlo, A (2015). The Flexibility of Urban Planning Policy, Processes and Outcomes in Response to Cultural Diversity, Johannesburg