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The Bottom Road area in Cape Town is highlighted in a new article as an example of how urban green commons can support biodiversity conservation and reconnect urban dwellers to nature. Photo: The Bottom Road Sanctuary
This land is your land…
Urban green areas managed by citizens can reduce ecosystem management costs and help people reconnect to nature
When you enter Bottom Road in Grassy Park, Cape Town, you enter a thriving example of how a civic-led ecological restoration project could look like. The story about Bottom Road is a story about how citizens in areas of post-apartheid Cape Town have gone from being social nobodies to inspirational stewards of nature conservation.
In 2005 the City of Cape Town sold out land close to a seasonal lake and wetland area in the southern parts of Cape Flats. The land was bought mainly by residents who had grown up in neighbouring Grassy Park.
The residents quickly saw the potential of beautifying the area and create a “community spirit” where people could walk around freely and meet, a vision far from conventional planning based on high security walls and low community feeling.