The group areas act contributed to development of townships up to where they are today.
Established on the farm Vlakfontein in 1953, “Mother of Melodies” or Mamelodi as the Pretoria East township is officially designated, was established in 1945 as part of segregation by the apartheid government. The residents of Mamelodi mostly, according to history, were removed from a suburb known as Lady Selbourne, a suburb in Pretoria.
Even in Mamelodi there are informal settlements and the demand for residential property is greater here when looking at the size of Mamelodi and the number of residents in both informal settlements and fixed residential homes. At the last census there was a total of 334 577 permanent residents making their homes on 45,19km2.
The demand for property will outstrip supply and this is a serious driving factor even in a suburb such as Mamelodi.
It is a well established suburb with amenities like malls, schools, and daycare centres and hospitals catering for residents’ needs. The infrastructure is also still developing on a frequent basis due to the fact that Mamelodi is still expanding.
Mamelodi is in a prime location for access to public transport and other suburbs in Pretoria. Bronkhorstspruit Road east and Pretoria road west leads to the Pretoria CBD and Solomon Mahlangu Road leading to the North eastern parts of Pretoria like Menlyn, Garsfontein, Silver Lakes and further afield.
Pretoria University has set up a campus in Mamelodi in 2004 for learners that cannot get to the main campus.
Due to the fact that this is still very much a challenged community, there are a number of outreach programs and facilities which assist the residents like the Viva Foundation’s Living Art Gallery and the U.S Embassy’s Mae Jemison Science Reading Room.
Another critical outreach program is the Itsoseng Clinic, located on the University of Pretoria, Mamelodi Campus which offers a psychological clinic for the patients with mental illnesses.