Development infrastructure as a social laboratory

  • GCRO
  • Date of publication: 25 July 2018

The Mabopane Station is a potentially important commuter and economic facility in the Gauteng City-Region, even though it is located 40 minutes north of downtown Pretoria by car. GCRO's Ngaka Mosiane spent two months studying the station as a multi-modal transport facility and a nerve centre of an emergent local economy (see the image below). This study is part of a larger research project Landscapes of peripheral and displaced urbanisation. As a result of the research, the station is beginning to attract wider local and international attention. Ngaka led a tour of the station with Hannah Schilling, a doctoral candidate at the International Graduate Research Program, Center for Metropolitan Studies. He is also due to give a lecture in this facility, thanks to permission granted by the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa. The talk will be given to a group of undergraduate students from the African American Studies Department, University of Maryland in the United States. They will be in the country during the period July 30 – August 17 to learn about the many dimensions of social inequalities and the consequences for well-being in South Africa. The station, along with commuter data, is to be featured in the GCRO July 2018 Map of the Month.

Mabopane station

An aerial view of Mabopane Station precinct: a collage of the real and design images.

Source: City of Tshwane. (2013). Mabopane Station Modal Interchange Design Development Stage 3: Detail Design Report Rev 1. Bryanston: Bosch Stemele (Pty) Ltd.


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