“Having the freedom to having freedom”. Youth Participatory Assessment of Accessibility in Port Elizabeth, South Africa

This study explores the subjective definitions of access to the city in a group of young people in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. Through semi-structured interviews, workshops, and participative observation those definitions emerged. Departing from the concept of perceived accessibility, it came apparent that those definitions gravitate around three essential elements: availability of safe and affordable public transportation, safe neighbourhoods and free circulation within them, and opportunities (places and activities) for free entertainment. Accessibility is discussed as a central capability from the Capabilities Approach and connected to the notions of Right to the City and Social Justice. Finally, suggestions for institutional actions are offered.