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​​Spatial Development Framework 2040
​​Adopted 23 June 2016

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The Spatial Development Framework 2040 (SDF) for Johannesburg is a metro-wide spatial policy document that identifies the main challenges and opportunities in the city, sets a spatial vision, and outlines strategies to achieve that vision.

​The framework was developed through extensive public participation, and through collaboration between the City of Johannesburg, UN Habitat, The Urban Morphology and Complex Systems Institute, Iyer Urban Design and the French Development Agency.

The SDF seeks to address four major issues in Johannesburg's spatial and social landscape:

  • Increasing pressure on the natural environment
  • Spatial inequalities and the job-housing mismatch
  • Exclusion and disconnection and
  • Inefficient residential densities and land use diversity.

The policy aims to create a spatially just world class African city based on the principles of:

  • Equity
  • Justice
  • Resilience
  • Sustainability and
  • Urban efficiency.

These principles are translated into the SDF's spatial vision of a compact polycentric city which concentrates growth in a compact urban core including defined transformation areas and key urban and transit oriented development nodes. Compared to other scenarios tested in the SDF review process, this model performed best in terms of economic, environmental and social indicators.
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The SDF was adopted by council on the 23
rd of June 2016, and advertised in the Gauteng Provincial Gazette on the 27th of July 2016.

The SDF is used to guide development in the city and to guide land use decisions that the city takes. Details of how the SDF is applied in relation to existing Regional Spatial Development Frameworks (RDSFs) and more localised spatial plans are outlined in the document on pg. 23.​