As part of a highly successful campaign that launched in Cape Town’s City Bowl in July last year, Gugulethu has begun its own interactive, public campaign to unearth creative and significant new street and neighbourhood names for itself.
Surely this is the way all renaming should take place?
Often, renaming anything in South Africa comes with its controversial, divisive, and selective complications.
People are not fully involved in the process and draconian methods of engagement like the fax machine are involved.
Not any more though, the City of Cape Town and the service providers for this project Name Your Hood, have begun a daily campaign that makes use of online, door to door, mobile and creative, interactive campaigns to spread the word that it’s time to rename the hoods of Gugulethu.
Capetonians, but more importantly the residents of Gugulethu, have been given the chance to make their mark and leave a new legacy by participating in the campaign to unearth creative, historically relevant and functional names for Gugulethu’s streets. Often, it’s the stories and personal attachments that people have with a street that give it its relevance, and this is the key reason that when a person submits their name suggestion for a street in Gugulethu – its relevance will be recorded and archived – something completely new for South Africa.
Communities will finally get a voice, whilst making their streets easier to navigate by igniting community spirit and creativity to produce user-friendly names through a democratic process.
Contributors are able to suggest their street names via hard copy pamphlets and online via the Name Your Street website. Via the website, contributors can also add their unique stories and historical perspectives about the 91 streets to be renamed in Gugulethu – and people will thus be able to read bygone accounts of people and events that have helped shape one of South Africa’s most famous areas.
Says Councilor Brett Herron, Mayoral Committee Member: Transport, Roads and Stormwater:
Renaming the 91 streets in Gugulethu, which still holds the stigma of a hurtful past, will be implemented using Name Your Hood’s methodology; which will break Gugulethu up into smaller neighbourhoods (hoods) each containing streets to be renamed.
A modern campaign to reach all ages has already begun by utilising pamphleting and delivering this door-to-door and at homes for the aged for the older generation, mobi-technology for the youth, online technology for the generations in between, and activations at landmarks in Gugulethu to create a hype around the Name Your Street campaign.
Name Your Hood will ask the community to nominate names for the streets in which they live and others if they want to comment. The nominations will be submitted to a panel of experts who will advise the Naming Committee, who considers naming proposals as per the City’s Naming Policy guidelines.
The resultant will be sent out for public comment. Name Your Hood will submit the results from the public comment to the City’s Public Participation Unit (City’s Project Managers of Name Your Street Campaign) which will then be subjected to an internal process for ultimate approval by Council. So this is not a rubber stamping process, the public input is invaluable in this instance as with all City’s processes submitted for public comment.
The City welcomes the involvement of the Name Your Hood team in this important identity building exercise. With their expert knowledge and practical experience, we hope to see a creative, exciting and inclusive process that will allow everyone in Gugulethu to have their say.
The proposed new street names flowing from this public participation process will be forwarded to the City, for its consideration as part of a formal renaming process, similar to what was recently concluded with other streets.
Numerous campaigns at schools, old age homes and elsewhere all help to create the awareness.
A modern Gugulethu hangout – Mzoli’s
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