African Urban Economies: Viability, Vitality or Vitiation?

Type Book Section - A matter of timing: Migration and housing access in Metropolitan Johannesburg
Title African Urban Economies: Viability, Vitality or Vitiation?
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2006
Page numbers 233-253
Publisher Palgrave Macmillan UK
City London
The city of Johannesburg lies at the centre of the largest urban conurbation in Sub-Saharan Africa. In the past, this conurbation was known by the clumsy acronym PWV that stood for the Pretoria–Witwatersrand–Vereeniging complex. Today, it has the political status of a province and has been renamed Gauteng, a popular local name meaning ‘place of gold’. A province that is almost entirely urban, Gauteng is home to 7.3 million people: about onethird of South Africa’s urban population of 21.8 million.1 Using the most recent metropolitan demarcations, the population of Johannesburg itself was about 2.6 million in 1996,2 making it the second largest city in South Africa, after Durban (2.8 million), and marginally bigger than Cape Town (also about 2.6 million).

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