Ponte City is a skyscraper in Berea Johannesburg, this is the tallest residential building in Africa. When Ponte was built it was a desirable and high in demand address to live because you could see all over Johannesburg. According to Dlala Nje on a good day, you can see Pretoria as well. In the late 1980s, the crime in the city and surrounding areas rose, which made it unsafe. By the end of Apartheid, a lot of gangs moved into the tower which made it extremely dangerous. There was even talk about making it a high-rise prison.
The building was taken over by a group which fixed it up and cleaned it up. You can live in the building now, the rent is dirt cheap and the view will leave you breathless. Dlala Nje has launched and does not only have tours but also has a community centre available for people who live in the building, they try to keep the children off the street and safe.
The tour (This is Hillbrow) that we did through Dlala Nje was an amazing experience, we went up in the building to one of the apartments and after that went down to the core. After touring the Ponte City Tower we went on a walk in Berea, something that you normally won’t be able to do. While walking in the city we went past the post office and park and a brothel or two. Included in the Dlala Nje Tour is a beverage at a bar in the city.
Dlala Nje is definitely recommendable and they were professional. If you are interested in doing a tour, contact Dlala Nje on http://www.dlalanje.org/