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2018: A Year in Review

14 Dec 2018 - 11:00

It has been an action-filled year at URERU and we are very pleased with the progress made in 2018. The unit has continued to see considerable growth and this year’s end brings a tremendous sense of accomplishment as well as excitement for 2019. This brief review serves to highlight the key milestones achieved during 2018 and what you can expect to see from URERU in 2019.

Research Projects:

This year the unit has embarked on a number of exciting research projects across a broad spectrum of real estate and urban development related topics.

A Key project undertaken by the unit this year was the Public Land Development Research Programme (PLDRP) that looked at various aspects regarding the development of public land in South Africa. Among others, this project involved mapping the development process in the Western Cape and an evaluation of the potential of releasing public land through a leasehold model, using the Waterfall estate as a case study.

Another major theme for 2018 involved examining housing development at different scales; from national government and the City Support Programme, to micro-developers building small-scale rental accommodation in Khayelitsha. This aspect of the unit’s work also saw us partner with local and regional government to advise on a number of policies and programmes relating to housing.

Other research projects undertaken this year include the furthering of previous research we initiated on Land-Based Financing mechanisms for delivering public infrastructure in South Africa. Additionally, we are helping to define a real estate curricula more reflective of the specific needs of real estate professionals in an emerging country context. Finally, the unit has partnered with Anchor Stockbrokers and the Rebel Group to establish a Real Estate Investment Trust research group to carry out REIT-related research across Africa. We are aiming to have the first Africa REITs Yearbook out at some stage next year.

The Relaunch of the Journal of African Real Estate Research:

We are very proud and excited to have played an integral role in the relaunch of the Journal of African Real Estate Research (JARER). The journal is the official peer-reviewed journal of the African Real Estate Society and is hoted by URERU and UCT”s Library. This year we were inundated with high-quality submissions from across the continent and were able to publish two issues in 2018. We would like to thank everyone involved in making the journal’s continued success a reality.

Alliances with Industry and Academic Institutions:

The main purpose of URERU is to develop a vehicle for collaborative research between industry and academia across the continent. To this end, the unit has sought to develop strategic partnerships and research alliances with various academic and industry institutions across Africa. This year saw the establishment of a research alliances with the City of Cape Town, Makerere University, Uganda; the University of Nairobi, Kenya; the Central City Improvement District (CCID), the Greater Tygerberg Partnership (GTP); MDA Property Systems; the Western Cape Property Developer’s Forum (WCPDF), Anchor Stockbrokers, and the Rebel Group. Through these relationships the unit hopes to further foster pan-African real-estate research that actively engages citizens, academics and professionals alike.

Next Steps... 2019:

Despite looking forward to a much needed break over the festive season, we are eagerly awaiting what is in store for URERU in the new year. A major avenue of research for next year will be centred around technology and how it will affect urban development in South Africa. Additionally, the unit is continuing its research on the 24 hour city with a research project focussed on Cape Town’s night-time economy.

Thank you for your continued support and interest. We look forward to seeing you next year.