PREPARATION OF THE KAROO REGIONAL SPATIAL DEVELOPMENT FRAMEWORK
The Department of Agriculture Land Reform and Rural Development (DALRRD) has embarked on the process of preparing a Regional Spatial Development Framework (RSDF) for the Karoo Region, in terms of the Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act (SPLUMA), 2013 (Act No. 16 of 2013) for a period of eighteen months, commencing in mid-June 2020 and concluding in December 2021. The DALRRD also appointed a multi-disciplinary service provider team to assist with this process.
The name of the framework is Karoo Regional Spatial Development Framework (KRSDF) and its primary aim is to ensure coordination, integration and harmonisation of:
(1) socio-economic infrastructure investments,
(2) economic growth and job creation initiatives, and
(3) spatial transformation strategies in accordance with a shared vision and set of development objectives for the region.
Prior to DALRRD embarking on the process of preparing the KRSDF, a significant body of work was undertaken, which further strengthened the view that a RSDF is required for the region to realise its many and varied developmental objectives.
The need for the preparation of the KRSDF emerged from the work done by the South African Local Government Association (SALGA), in terms of its Small Town Regeneration (STR) programme, which was launched in 2013. At its inception, the STR programme was aimed at (1) the regeneration, restoration and fulfilling the economic potential of underperforming small towns, and (2) embracing the significance of small towns and their crucial roles in larger hierarchies of settlements.
Over time, the STR programme adopted a regionalist approach to small town development and regeneration, which resulted in a decisive move away from jurisdictional/administrative regions to functional social, spatial and economic regions. This approach was based on the understanding that municipalities can make far better use of their development opportunities through cross-boundary collaboration, cooperative spatial governance and ‘joined-up’ planning than by ‘going it alone’.
In accordance with the transition in SALGA’s STR Programme, a collaborative regionalist approach is being followed in the preparation of the KRSDF. As such, provision has been made, in the preparation process, for a series of region-focused engagement events, both at provincial and municipal level.