Yeoville, South Africa is Redeveloping

  • 16 years ago
  • Uncategorized
The Johannesburg suburbs of Yeoville and its neighbor Bellevue were, in times past, popular places to live that were rich in cultural life with restaurants, jazz bars, book stores and more for the residents of the area and city. The Johannesburg Development Agency (JDA) is working to revive the area with a multi-million rand facelift and stimulus for new building and development.
Yeoville has a long history and is full of wonderful stories from the past. Situated on a hill, it was originally marketed as an area for the rich to avoid the smoky air of Johannesburg’s mines. As the city grew, the area became a popular place for artists, musicians and activists. As such, it had a lively nightlife and cultural scene. When apartheid fell, it became one of the first integrated communities in the country.
Since then, the area has declined but is now seeing a comeback. Community organizations are working to rebuild the area and drive new investment and capital into the long-popular suburb. The Yeoville Stakeholders Forum (YSF), a combination of interest groups that promotes change, development and quality of life in the Greater Yeoville area is one group that is working to help revitalize the area.
“Things are beginning to change,” says Maurice Smithers, the secretary of the YSF. He continued: “The City bureaucracy has restructured itself to be more responsive to the needs of communities, especially in the inner city, of which Yeoville and Bellevue are considered to be a part.”
The JDA is upgrading Rockey-Raleigh Street, to make it once again an attractive, well-maintained and safe street offering a vibrant, mixed-use economy, according to the city. Also in the works are upgrades and renovates to the recreation center, clinic, sport courts and relocation of the library to a new, larger space. The Yeoville Community Park has already been restored and welcomes residents and visitors.
With so much being invested in this area, Yeoville and Bellevue look to become, if not as culturally significant as they once were, as popular as they used to be.
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