Capturing a community’s vision as a pattern language: Case study of the Mooiplaas community in Great Kei Municipality, South Africa
Keywords:Christopher Alexander, communal land, land-use management, pattern language, South Africa, spatial planning
Existing tools for capturing a community’s vision during a spatial planning and land-use management exercise often do not adequately articulate a community’s vision in an inspiring way and in a way that planners and the community are able to communicate what the vision actually means. The ‘pattern language’ approach, pioneered by Christopher Alexander and others, is introduced as a possible ‘new’ approach in South Africa that can be used to articulate a community’s vision as part of a municipal spatial development framework planning process. It is shown, based on qualitative research conducted at Mooiplaas, in the Great Kei Municipality in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa, that a preliminary pattern language can be developed by working with a specific community to identify those features of their community they would like to retain and improve as well as what new features they would like to introduce into their community based on their vision. Areas for further research related to the ‘pattern language’ concept are identified.
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