Gated communities are popular with the South African middle class, black as much as white. Gated communities are usually protected by high perimeter walls topped with electric fencing, guard dogs, barred doors and windows and alarm systems linked to private security forces. The Gauteng Rationalisation of Local Government Affairs Act 10 of 1998, allows communities to “restrict” access to public roads under the supervision of the municipalities. The law requires that entry control measures within these communities should not deny anyone access. The Tshwane municipality failed to process many of the applications it has received, leaving many suburbs exposed to high levels of crime. Several communities successfully sued, won and are now legally restricting access. These measures are generally considered effective in reducing crime (within those areas). Consequently, the number of enclosed neighbourhoods (existing neighbourhoods that have controlled access across existing roads) in Gauteng has continued to grow.
Photo: A.P. Uni