Johannesburg Nodal Review for Public Review

Johannesburg Nodal Review for Public Review

The Department of Development Planning and Urban Management recently embarked on a process to review the boundaries and controls of the urban nodes (district, specialist, metropolitan, local or industrial areas) within the City of Johannesburg. This came following the approval of the Spatial Development Framework (SDF) 2040 for Johannesburg. We delve into this document and accompanying processes to provide you with the information you need to know about the city you love.

Johannesburg Nodal Review for Public Review

Let’s start at the beginning.

What are nodes?
Nodes, also known as mixed-use nodes, may differ from one another (for example some need more housing while others may need more business), but essentially, they are areas where high intensity and mixed-use development (supported by government infrastructure investment) should take place.

The need for nodes:
The Spatial Development Framework (SDF) 2040 use a number of tools to direct urban growth and development. This is to ensure that development occurs in a way that is holistically sustainable; having positive environmental, social and economic effects. Development should be directed in a way that addresses the inequality and inefficiency in the City, transforming it into a more equitable, resilient, efficient and productive urban form. Private investment should also be directed to match government capital investment, promoting a mutually beneficial multiplier effect.

Johannesburg Nodal Review for Public Review

The SDF 2040 uses the following image to describe the compact polycentric vision for Johannesburg.

Since the early 2000’s, the City’s strategy for urban growth management was one of ‘compaction’. As the name suggests this promotes higher-density, mixed-use development in well-located parts of the City, rather than spreading out.

This approach allows for people to:
· live close to where they work and go to school,
· makes public transit such as Train and Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) viable,
· reduces the cost of providing infrastructure and other services,
· reduces pressure on the natural environment, and
· through a number of activities promotes economic growth.

For this plan to work, high-intensity development should be concentrated in clearly-defined, well-located areas.

So, what is actually happening?

The published Nodal Review opened for public comment from 7 October – 11 December 2016 and outlined the below:
· the aims of the Nodal Review,
· the process that was followed in reviewing the nodes in the city,
· describes the new ‘transect’ or ‘development zone’ approach which is an evolution of the nodal strategy, and
· development guidelines that should be applied in each of the development zones of the city.

This newly-suggested SDF does not include alterations of any current nodes (district, specialist, metropolitan, local or industrial), which remain the same. The Nodal Review process will, however, consider nodal boundary changes and additions.

This process includes two broad parts:
· technical analysis and modelling (a potential urban modelling exercise), and
· public participation on nodal additions and/or amendments. Which is where public opinion comes in.

Knowledgeable and interested parties such as developers, planning consultants, The Gauteng Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (GDARD), heritage organisations, environmental groups, residents’ associations, and City of Johannesburg departments provided input and proposals for the node boundary changes and additions. After which public participation sessions were held in each of the City’s regions.

Following this, internal participation was held in the City of Johannesburg, mainly with the Land Use Planning department after which the revised Nodal Review document along with an accompanying Draft Inclusionary Housing Incentives, Regulations and Mechanisms document was advertised for a second round of public opinion.

Which is where we are now.

The second round of 60 days commenting period commenced on 28 February 2018, after which the second round of Public Participation meetings of the Draft Nodal Review will take place on the 7th April.

If you would like to partake in the public opinion process visit for more information, relevant files for perusal as well as the comment, representation and objection procedure.

Johannesburg Nodal Review for Public Review