Re-Measuring for Reblocking


One of the problems that occurred with the reblocking process was how the shacks were measured and scaled in the technical drawings.  It then became important to re-measure the shacks within cluster one and that space constraints.

Cast Of Characters

Amanda, Victoria, Juan, and Brittany


F-section of Langrug

Scene & Reflection

For the reblocking process it is important that all of the information regarding the layout of the shacks and the details of the families are presented to the Municipality.  A part of this process includes making sure that the shack sizes and family information is accurate. This required going back out into F-section to re-measure all of the shacks. Through this process we wanted to include the community in the measurements so that they had a strong understanding of what their shack size truly is.

We started doing this by going out to F-section with Amanda and Victoria to talk to the members of the community living it what will be cluster one. The woman who lived in the first home we visited spoke English very well, so we were able to have a conversation with her directly rather than having everything translated for us. We were able to find out that her one shack was actually two sacks together that needed to be separated. One problem that she expressed to us was that even though they technically had two shacks they were not able have both of them registered as their own property. This is a problem for their family because one of the family members living with them needs to have their own property in their name. She explained how they had been trying for a while to get this matter sorted out but they were still being considered as one residence. This discussion highlighted the complexities of land tenure and rights to new shacks associated with reblocking.

This need for improved communication could also be seen through talking to more members of the community. The biggest questions we got were how much was the reblocking going to cost, would they be able to expand their shacks, and when the process would start. While the answers to these questions are not available currently it is important for the community to be aware of the preparation process.

As a part of our efforts to make sure that the community is aware of what is happening right now with the reblocking we made sure that each resident was fully aware of the size of their shack.  This allows them to know where we are with the process currently and also what the size of their shack truly is.  It is possible for some homeowners to think that they have one shack size, say that that is the size they want, and then receive a different size shack in the reblocking process.  For this we had Amanda and Victoria explain what we were doing to the different residents in Xhosa. We then had them come outside with us so that they could see us measure the different sides of their shacks and so that they could read the measurements themselves. Once we had the measurements we calculated out their shack area and made sure that they understood how large their shack was.