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Tuesday Dec 04, 2012

Gugulethu residents up for street renaming

The street renaming campaign in Gugulethu has begun, and residents are able to put their suggestions forward for 25 streets.

Name Your Hood, which is running the campaign for the city, will launch this part of the process.

It allows people to check online all the suggestions for a street or "hood" and also to check which are the most popular names.

This campaign will involve naming eight "hoods" in the township as well as new names for 91 streets.

The names of "hoods" will be chosen by popular vote. There are also pamphlets explaining the history of each "hood".

But the list of street name suggestions will be taken to the city, which will compile a shortlist. The list will be put out to city-wide public participation next year.

Name Your Hood had an online campaign in the city centre to name certain areas in the CBD.

In the Gugulethu process, residents can vote online and via their cellphones.

Voting forms are also given to residents to complete. People can deposit their forms in eight voting boxes at malls, clinics and taxi ranks across the area.

Name Your Hood has set up internet kiosks for residents where they can check on the process and see how many votes the different suggestions are receiving.

Each suggestion also has a motivation attached.

Soon, Name Your Hood will visit local schools and old-age homes with computers so they could also view the renaming campaign in real time.

Bruce Good, the founder of Name Your Hood, said this kind of participation meant that people could stay "actively engaged the entire time".

"It's very transparent and gives people time to get used to the new names."

People have already been giving suggestions for the names of the first "hood", which is seen as the arts and the culture hub of the area.

The suggestions include naming the area after Dr Aadil Moerat. There is already a Dr Moerat Street in this part of Gugulethu.

Moshe Apleni, Name Your Hood project manager, explained that Moerat had become known as the "people's doctor" in Gugulethu.

"He would treat pensioners even when they could not pay, and they would pay later... he served the people so well," said Apleni.

Another suggested naming one of the "hoods" Bishop's Court.

Cape Argus


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