Monday 5
Green and Blue Urban Resilience
Luc Doumenc
› 11:05 - 18:00 (6h55)
› Montpellier
Equitable urban ecologies: a study of contemporary Cape Town
Pippin Anderson  1@  
1 : African Centre for Cities, University of Cape Town  (ACC, UCT)
African Centre for Cities University of Cape Town Private Bag X3 Rondebosch 7701 Cape Town -  Afrique du Sud

Urban green space is variably configured in response to social and economic drivers. This paper explores the ecology of the City of Cape Town, through a plant functional trait lens. Despite 20 years of democracy Cape Town's urban form still bares the hallmarks of an apartheid city with racial and economic segregation and associated inequality between neighbourhoods. The accompanying plant communities and ensuing ecologies have yet to be explored. In light of the current acknowledgement of the multiple benefits offered by green space to urban dwellers, a full understanding of the ecology of these diverse neighbourhoods is critical in terms of redress and reimagining the City in an equitable form. Plant functional traits have proved a useful means of interpreting landscape form and function, where structural diversity and specific suites of traits can be correlated with ecological rigour. The plant cover, composition, and associated functional traits, of green space were investigated along a social and economic gradient, within a single original vegetation type. Sites of investigation included urban gardens, conservation areas, public green space, and brown field sites. The findings are interpreted in light of neighbourhood social and demographic data, urban structure and form, as well as ecosystem services. Data are explored in light of current theory linking the adaptive capacity of neighbourhoods and ecological status, where undermined ecologies potentially present greater exposure to risk and shock.

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