Spatial Strategies Alignment Discussion Paper

This Report is a summary of an earlier study undertaken for the South African Cities Network (SACN) and the National Department of Cooperative Governance entitled: ‘Spatial Strategies Alignment Review’. The review defined what spatial alignment means. From the definition, certain assumptions, regarding spatial alignment were developed. These assumptions were applied to three case study municipalities: Rustenburg, Ekurhuleni and Lephalale. Certain findings, conclusions and recommendations were drawn using these case studies.


Spatial Strategies alignment is viewed as a policy reform, coordination focused process that marries government intent and action to achieve specified outcomes. In South Africa, spatial strategies alignment means meeting current needs and priorities, and addressing historical racially defined spatial patterns. The Review defines spatial alignment more broadly as having, spatial, sector (i.e. different service delivery departments), institutional relationships and time horizon dimensions. The benefits of the effective coordination of these dimensions are defined as improved service delivery, the addressing of priority place specific interventions, maximizing local area advantages and ensuring that individual interventions realize the long-term vision for the area in question.