City Sustainability Strategies

Existing city planning and implementation processes are ‘tried and tested’ and have proven to be a successful means of planning and implementing large-scale infrastructure projects in cities. However an increasing interest in developing more sustainable cities has led to questions about whether these processes are able to achieve the change required to address climate change and sustainable development.

A range of city sustainability indicator frameworks such ISO 37120:2014 are being developed to assess city progress in terms of sustainability. However, these frameworks are divorced from the processes that plan and design cities such as the Integrated Development Plans (IDPs) and Spatial Development Frameworks (SDFs).

This paper proposes a City Capability Framework that strengthens the relationship between city sustainability strategies, targets and indicators and city planning and implementation processes. It outlines how the framework can be applied, and integrated with existing planning processes within a city, through the examples from the City of Johannesburg in South Africa. A critical analysis is undertaken to identify strengths and weaknesses of the framework and make proposals for its improvement.

The paper can be accessed here.