The challenges associated with policy formulation along arterial routes : a case study of Ontdekkers Road, Johannesburg Metropolitan Council
Arterial routes are key structuring components of the urban structure. These routes perform vital functions, including the connectivity of nodes or nodal areas, providing access to urban opportunities, linking metropolitan / municipal areas and providing access to the public transportation system. In order to protect the functionality of these routes, which primarily relates to a mobility function, development along these routes should be controlled. The formulation of policies for development along arterial routes is vital to ensure sustainable, integrated development along these routes without negatively impacting on the urban structure as a whole. A number of challenges are experienced during the formulation–process of these policies, especially since development along these routes is multi–faceted in nature. A case study of Ontdekkers Road, which is a major arterial route located within the City of Johannesburg, is used as the main point of departure. A comparison of the three sections of the route extending from Krugersdorp to Johannesburg (i.e. Voortrekker, Ontdekkers and Main Road) and the applicable development policies provides insight into the key challenges experienced during the policy–formulation process and the implementation of these policies. The study provides key recommendations in response to the challenges experienced along major arterial routes. The recommendations predominantly relate to the multi–faceted nature of development along these routes; the necessity of an interdisciplinary approach to policy–formulation; the importance of comprehensive public participation that involves the relevant stakeholders, professionals and authorities; and the continuous interaction between neighbouring municipalities to identify cross–border issues and co–ordinate planning initiatives. The dynamic nature of development along arterial routes necessitates dynamic policies that consider changing social, economic and physical conditions. To this end, the study recommends the review of development policies on an annual basis and the implementation of contingency–based planning.