SA slumlords not unique

South African inner city problems are the same as in other major cities throughout the world, making it easier to find solutions, fresh property research showed.

The Trafalgar Inner City Report 2007 showed that inner cities across the world shared the same problems, which include cesspools of slum lands rife with building hijackers and slumlords.

"In seeking solutions, local experts should consider the universal answers rather than think-tanking fresh ones," the report said.

The findings showed how redevelopments in Toronto were incorporating mixed-use housing and integrating residential and commercial opportunities to minimise the ecological footprint.

Locally, South African cities boasted successful social housing projects alongside those made public in Curitiba, Brazil and the Bronx in New York.

Neville Schaefer, chairman of home-letting business Trafalgar, said it was an international human phenomenon to believe the local situation was unique, yet a broader worldview highlighted the commonality of problems and solutions.

"There are other countries and cities that have faced - and resolved - the same issues, and in asking for or investigating their approaches, their pathways to success offer hope locally," he said.

South African inner cities are marred by waste, grime, decaying buildings, illegal street trading, building hijackers and slumlords

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