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The reshaping of urban structure in South Africa through municipal capital investment: Evidence from three municipalities

S Laldaparsad
H Geyer
D du Plessis


Although Spatial Development Frameworks are regarded as the key spatial restructuring tool of local municipalities, the investment of public resources through the municipal capital budget is of equal importance. Public-sector capital investment plays a key role in the reorientation of spatial priorities by guiding private investment and restructuring historically inefficient spaces. The alignment of spatial development strategies and municipal capital budgets provide a potentially effective restructuring mechanism for local municipalities. This article analyses the degree of alignment of these instruments through the case-study investigation of three local  municipalities: Johannesburg, Cape Town, and Rustenburg. The findings indicate that spatial development frameworks significantly influence budgetary capital spending patterns and address growth management and connectivity. However significant resources were committed in marginalised fragmented settlements, a trend that reinforced spatial inefficiencies.