Why We're Fighting Apartheid's Legacy with NYC Style Borough Pride Why We're Fighting Apartheid's Legacy with NYC Style Borough Pride
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Why We're Fighting Apartheid's Legacy with NYC Style Borough Pride

April 17, 2013
 
These new neighborhoods create a view and insights into South Africa that is more than the international stereotype of crime, white beaches, surfing and safaris.
 
The idea of neighborhood branding in Cape Town came to South African founder Bruce Good in 2008, when he lived in New York City. He fell in love with the city while completing a semester at the NYU Stern School of Business and was taken by how strong and well defined the city’s communities were. It all boiled down to the neighborhood culture. 
 
“NYC is effectively like an evocative patchwork of neighborhoods, and I was struck by how pervasive neighborhood pride is in NYC,” Good said. “Directions are often given by neighborhood, and shops and locals rally around and are proud to be a resident of say SoHo, Tribeca or Dumbo.”
 
 
“Name Your Hood uses a transparent and democratic process to decide on community names in South Africa. In some neighborhoods, new Hood names have already been established, and the organization works to solidify and bolster them, In others, such as in the township of Gugulethu, we work with the community to create Hood names and identities to what was previously just one big homogenous area.” 
 
Name Your Hood works with architects, planners, and local residents to set about mapping neighborhoods in the city, with an awareness of sensitive issues like apartheid and racial inequalities.
 
Eight ‘Hoods demarcated in Gugulethu, seven kilometers from the center of Cape Town, have now been named (the campaign ended in March 2013). NYH has plans to enter many more townships and cities throughout South Africa. This ground-level branding hopes to assist in the moving on from the apartheid-created space into one which gives Gugulethu, and similar communities more pride, a sense of ownership and a solid identity.
 
 
At an even deeper lever, NYH ran another initiative in Gugulethu called 'Name Your Street.’ This campaign used the same democratic process as NYH, and the people of Gugulethu  suggested street names, instead of the usual government action of changing names without local consent. From suggestions like Gucci and Hope Street to Steve Biko Road and Mamtolo Avenue, we wanted to replace the current 91 generic street names (called Native Yards, and number from NY1 all the way to NY91) which were instituted during apartheid.
 
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Why We're Fighting Apartheid's Legacy with NYC Style Borough Pride