Re-Imagining Public Spaces
The City of Ethekwini, Durban, South Africa, hosted a workshop on Public Spaces. The event was held within the framework of the United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) Committee that is working on developing the concept and a Global Toolkit on Public Spaces.
Ethekwini is spearheading the Public Spaces discourse in Southern Africa and also taking concrete measures to streamline the concept in its planning system. Some cities from Malawi and Mozambique also attended the workshop. The United Cities and Local Governments Africa Secretariat was represented by its programme manager, Charles Patsika. Among the main recommendations of the workshop were that the UCLG Committee on Public Space continue to work close with UN Habitat towards developing guidelines/ toolkit that could support local governments incorporate the concept and apply it in their planning systems.
The UCLG Africa programme manager also informed the workshop about the Africa Local Government Academy (ALGA), an initiative to improve on the relevance and efficacy of capacity development programmes offered for local governments in Africa. The UCLG Africa will establish a virtual platform for managing the ALGA as well as establish physical regional learning establishments that would provide relevant and up-to-date learning opportunities for senior personnel and politicians of the local governments.