Brown University: Community Report on housing struggles in Eastridge, Michell’s Plain

24 02 2011

* Click here to access the entire paper on housing struggles in Eastridge *

Introduction

This project aimed to explore the social, economic and political changes which have occurred over the last fifteen years in several areas in Cape Town, including Eastridge. To do this, interviews were conducted over a three week period. The researchers were supplied with some initial contacts in the area by the research coordinator, and from there the snowballing technique was used to acquire more informants. The people interviewed by the researchers represented a diverse spectrum of interests and roles within the community. For Eastridge, the following informants provided the information on the area: a representative of a local school; previous and current ward councillors, a local general practitioner; a representative of the Mitchell’s Plain Urban Renewal Program (URP); a member of the Mitchell’s Plain Concerned Hawkers and Traders Association; representatives of the Eastridge Community Centre; activists in the Eastridge anti-evication Campaign; a worker at the National Institute of Crime Prevention (NICRO); a housing activist from the Cape Town Community Housing Company (CTCHC) village; and a real estate agent operating in the Eastridge area. This document is organised into three sections: first, a brief description of the area is given, through information from the informants as well as from the researchers’ perceptions from their time spent in the area. Second, an analysis of the key issues in Eastridge is explored. This is organised into two parts; the first looks at the key themes which emerged in the interviews with the key informants, while the second part looks at the themes covered in the literature regarding the area. The third section is a photograph album of the area which the researchers took during their time spent in Eastridge. While this document is by no means supposed to represent all the issues that Eastridge faces, nor the many opinions present in the neighbourhood, the key informants show a diverse spectrum of interests and roles within the community, and thus provided useful insight into the key issues in Eastridge.

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