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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The uniqueness of locality: the case of the Durban Functional Region
Author:Pillay, UdeshISNI
Periodical:Urban Forum
Geographic terms:South Africa
Subjects:economic development
municipal government
urban areas
Abstract:At present the Durban Functional Region (South Africa) is experiencing a development crisis. It has been suggested that some of the problems inherent in this have derived from the proclaimed specificity and particularity of the DFR. This paper examines features of this metropolitan region in an attempt to shed light on this suggestion. A discussion of Durban in historical perspective is followed by a description of the key local dimensions of the region, identified as the spatial, the economic and the political. While the constraints of the DFR's spatial structure are cause for concern, there are features of the region's spatial environment which place it in an advantageous position to effect economic growth, reconstruction and development. The most important sector of the economy is manufacturing. Attention is also paid to tourism, the port and related activities, and the informal economy. Political expression and organization in Durban, and the former province of Natal at large, has often exhibited a degree of political and cultural distinctiveness. Attention is paid to 'white politics', 'African politics', and 'Indian politics'. The paper concludes that while not necessarily unique, the DFR is in relative terms a distinct metropolitan environment. Bibliogr.