From Voice of America
South Africa’s black middle class is growing by leaps and bounds – with a new survey showing it now outspends the white middle class. This is having a profound impact on the historical black township of Soweto where prices of land and houses have soared in recent years due to growing demand for better housing.
Protea Glen, an extension of Soweto, is designed to accommodate the needs of the black middle class. It has all the same features as the housing of choice of most well-off South-Africans: you need a special permission to enter the premises; it is guarded 24/7 by a private security company; it is surrounded by a tall electric fence; and its common areas boast neat lawns.
Not what you would expect to find in the township of Soweto – where many of Johannesburg’s poor black population lived in shacks and segregated from whites under apartheid.
But because it is Soweto – the prices are still lower than other housing estates in and around Johannesburg and currently within reach of middle income families. The 91 homes here cost a mere $35,000 apiece. And they have been purpose built for people like Kabelo Mengy Mokoatle, a math teacher, who belongs to South Africa’s burgeoning black middle class.
“I was interested living in the complex because of the security. As I’m a single parent I want to make sure that my son is protected if I’m not around,” said Mokoatle.
Upgrade in lifestyle
Themba Mtambo, 42, bought his 48 square meter house two years ago for his family of five.
Read more at voanews.com