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Monday Oct 31, 2016

Open Streets Langa draws crowds

King Langalibalele Drive in Langa was a hive of activity at the weekend as young and old gathered at the Langa Open Streets day.

Visitors and community members having fun on the road during the Langa Open Streets day.

Open Streets reimagines public life and uses streets differently to forge people connections. In Langa, people were encouraged to park and use trains or cycle.

Various sports including a soccer, basketball, tennis, were the order of the day, along with drawing and skating. There was also an opportunity for food vendors and clothing stalls to showcase their goods.

The Open Streets day project started in Observatory in 2013, and has grown, with more people taking part. It was the third time the event had been held in Langa.

Open Streets managing director Marcela Guerrero Casas described Open Streets as a simple concept with a powerful message that the perception that streets are only for cars should change.

"We take it for granted that streets belong to people. This is an opportunity to imagine a different future," said Casas.

The event also aimed to encourage environmental sustainability and call on the community to help tackle climate change, she added.

Sandiso Viti, 10, said he was excited to be able to play soccer and cycle on the streets.

"Normally, our parents don't want us to play on the road because we might be knocked by cars, but today it is different. The streets belong to us. I wish this could go on every day," said Viti.

Akhona Maxhoba, who sold clothing along the streets, said the event was good for her business. "I got so much exposure that I would not have if the event did not take place. It's fun, and children are having a great time. I love the vibe."

Transport and Public Works MEC Donald Grant said he used a taxi to get to Langa, and the experience was wonderful.

Cape Times




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