Cape Towns so-called Northern Suburbs lie around 15km to the north-east of the city centre, straddling the N1 motorway which connects the Mother City to South Africa's vast interior.
Cape Town's recent growth has given rise to a gradual exodus of housing and industry to the hinterlands, and nowhere is the creeping spread of suburbia more evident than around the towns of Bellville, Parow and Durbanville. Developers have taken advantage of the open expanses of the Tygerberg Valley to construct spacious and affordable free-standing houses around the old town centres.
There has been a sharp increase in construction over the last decade, but planning has been orderly and the area remains well groomed, with enough open spaces and amenities to attract the young families that make up the bulk of the inhabitants.
Traffic becomes a problem around rush hour, but larger businesses have begun to follow their workers out of the city and several business parks have sprung up in recent years. Large, upmarket and modern shopping centres also pepper the area, as do sports facilities, but restaurants and bars are a little thin on the ground. Schools are in plentiful supply and of good standing, but the lingua franca reflects that of the majority of the locals: Afrikaans.
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Northern Suburbs area
Tygerberg Valley Road, Cape Farms, Cape Town, South Africa