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The town called Alice is steeped in history: it was here, for example, that leaders from all over Africa, including Nelson Mandela, were educated. It is still the home of Fort Hare University, but the town itself has sprawled into chaotic, skewed growth.

The Alice regeneration strategy (December 2010) envisages Alice as “... an economically and socially viable university town”. This vision was further refined into three over-arching strategic thrusts, which guide the regeneration process: 

• Alice as an African university town, which speaks to the integration of the University of Fort Hare with the town and the integral part that the history of the town can play in its future

• The support of a sustainable community through the unlocking of opportunities 

• Encouraging an economically active, culturally vibrant community by encouraging investment.

The regeneration strategy honed in on three strategic priorities, namely: to encourage investment; to unlock economic and job opportunities; and to integrate the University of Fort Hare and Alice. Based on this, three priority interventions were identified, which are believed to hold the keys to unlocking Alice’s economic potential. These are:

• Upgrading of the central business district (CBD) and civic core

• Upgrading of Alice taxi rank 

• Unlocking of middle-income residential development. 

Upgrading the civic core of the town and its heritage park consolidates economic and social activities in the centre of town. In addition, government services are clustered for ease of access by the public. Creating opportunities for some small-scale retail and office space to thrive in the centre of town ensures that revenue is generated to sustain the park.  All these complement the new municipal offices.

The Alice Pedestrian Bridge, Paved Walkways and associated lighting, links the Alice CBD with Ntselemanzi, Victoria Hospital and Lovedale College. 



The Adopt-a-Spot project was implemented by ASPIRE on behalf of the Department of Environmental Affairs.   The aim was to improve the environment management in various areas of BCMM through a waste management strategy to eradicate illegal dumping. The project entails turning dumping areas into productive land (e.g. planting vegetables).


The programme objectives include the creation of a clean, safe and healthy environment in order to:

• Attract tourists;

• Encourage job creation; and

• Influence the mindset of Buffalo City residents to take pride in the Metro and maintain the city. 

The Adopt-a-Spot project is part of a broader programme which will include the following activities:

• Street sweeping and gutter cleaning along pavements and open spaces in East London and King Williams Town.

• Clearing of Illegal dumps

• Awareness campaigns

• Erection of “No Dumping” signs

• Operation Coca (cleaning campaign). 

A Memorandum of Agreement was signed in June 2014 between ASPIRE and the Department of Environmental Affairs. This project is valued at R10 000 000 and is aimed at assisting Buffalo City Metro (BCM) in its attempts to identify illegal dumping sites, clean them up, and develop vegetable gardens for food security for the city. 

The activities to be undertaken by ASPIRE in execution of the project will cover 11 areas within the Metro, including Dimbaza, Zwelitsha, Ginsberg, Cambridge Location, Scenery Park, Amalinda Forrest, Reeston, Mdantsane NU 1,3, Duncan Village and Highway Gardens.


While this project is the first of its kind for ASPIRE, it is in line with the ASPIRE funding model which was adopted during the year under review. Through this initiative ASPIRE will receive 7% of the project budget as implementer’s fees. These funds will be reinvested in the ADM. 


Over the course of the implementation of the project, the following was achieved:

• A total of 5 illegal dumping spots were rehabilitated and 4 vegetable gardens were planted, with a total of 6,000 m2 of land cleared

• >180 beneficiaries were employed in the project. 



Butterworth serves thousands of people – more each year – who live in the vast rural areas that surround it, but it was once a “no-hope” area like so many small towns, and continually deteriorating. The town’s growth had taken place without any proper planning, nor with sufficient suitable land and infrastructure for development: it mushroomed into congested chaos with a national road running through it. It was unsafe for both pedestrians and for motorists. 


A R17.25 million intervention included installation of street lights, pavements and parking and loading zones, as well as street furniture, such as benches and garbage bins. It also involved upgrading storm water drainage, and pedestrianising Market Street for informal traders and others.


The CBD upgrade will pay off in easing traffic congestion and promoting safety and security of the town’s residents and visitors. It is also a starting point for the town’s regeneration programme. 

ASPIRE initiated installation of festive Christmas lighting as part of the project handover to the local municipality: on 13 December 2011.  In a memorandum of agreement with ASPIRE,  the municipality assumes responsibility for maintenance, security and future expansion of the project in line with its development initiatives for the town.


Our Mission

Contributing to the betterment of its communities’ lives through a participatory development process to ensure that they have access to socio-economic opportunities