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The HDA has a register of identified state-owned land which we consider to be potentially well-located for human settlements. Over 35 000 hectares were identified in the previous financial year alone.

From this register, various portions of land have been prioritised and formally submitted for release to custodian departments. In 2010 the Randskou property (Farm Randskou, Nasrec, 324 IQ) was identified as well-located for human settlement development. It is a large piece of land measuring 93 hectares in Nasrec, making it one of the prime state properties in Johannesburg: it’s close to necessary infrastructure, services and amenities, and it’s owned by the Department of Public Works.

The surrounding areas are mainly middle-to-high-income residential and there is a general perception that poor people’s right to the city is limited. The property is, however, also required by other organs of state for various public purposes.

Recognising the diverse interests, the Minister of Public Works requested all interested organs of state to harmonise their development plans and develop an integrated plan for the land. The HDA is coordinating this process and detailed planning is underway. The integrated development plan will be presented to the political principals of the interested organs of state.

We have had numerous other cases where there is competition for public land amongst organs of state. These are not always easy to resolve due to the tension between the need of various public services, and the scarcity of suitably-located land for human settlement development.