Bloemfontein from Naval Hill

The Department of Urban and Regional Planning was established in 1979 as an offshoot of the Department of Architecture. Prior to this, a postgraduate programme in Urban and Regional Planning was offered within that department. As far back as 1980, we produced the first black planner in South Africa. More recently, the department was responsible for the first female with a PhD in planning in South Africa. We enjoy worldwide recognition, with mutual visits and publications.

What is Urban and Regional Planning?

Planning enhances people's opportunities, strives towards justice regarding space, and addresses economic resilience. Planners join local insights with their professional techniques in a collective attempt to improve the quality of places. They develop long- and short-term plans to ensure the best use of land for a specific space.  They calculate the environmental costs of economic growth and keep an eye on the exploitation of resources. Town planners often work in multidisciplinary teams and should have insight in various disciplines, while understanding the needs of the community and be able to persuade decision-makers and politicians. 

For more on planning as a career, and planning in South Africa in general, see the following links:

Honours in Spatial Planning, majoring in Human Settlements

In consultation with the national Department of Human Settlement, we are pleased to announce a new specialisation programme in 2016: A Bachelor of Honours in Spatial Planning, specialising in Human Settlements. The intention of this programme is to equip students with the necessary skills to work as Human Settlement (Housing) specialists.


Students with both honours and master's degrees can find employment in South Africa. This profession has been identified as one of the scarce skills professions. Employment opportunities are available in national, provincial, and local government, NGOs, and the private sector. Graduates from this department are working in Namibia, England, Ireland, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and others.

Our Masters in Urban and Regional Planning (by coursework) is accredited by the South African Council for Planners. This means that graduates with the MURP and the Honours in Spatial Planning can register as professional planners once they have sufficient practical experience.


Faculty Manager: Velaphi Makgwahla
T: + 27 51 401 3199

Marketing Manager: Elfrieda Lötter
T: +27 51 401 2531

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