The geographical area of Ramotshere Moiloa is predominantly rural including considerable land under traditional authorities (around 35% of the total area).
The Municipality is characterized by a few urban areas including Zeerust Town (the main town in the LM) as well as some formal settlement at Ikageleng, Henryville, Olienhout Park, Shalimar Park, Welbedacht (Lehurutshe Town) and Groot Marico. The vast majority of the population lives in a rural or peri-urban environment, which for most part is unplanned and poorly serviced. The rural part of the municipality is estimated at 70% of its total area, with over 40 villages spread across distances of up to 120 km from the main town. Mountainous terrain forms a significant divide between the areas along the N4 and the remainder of the LM area.
The natural environment is primarily characterised by turf thorn veldt and mixed bush veldt areas. Development of Ramotshere Moiloa itself is constrained by prominent hills that run in an east to west direction. Other constraints to the development planning of the RMLM are the lack of information, which is critically important for the planning of the area. There is also a complete lack of maps (formal cadastre) for the settlements that constitute the municipality.
The RMLM has an approved Spatial Development Framework (2008), which sets the strategic development direction for the area.
The SDF firstly recognises the proposals of the Provincial Spatial Development Framework (2004), which designates Zeerust as a Regional Node located on the Platinum Corridor.
The spatial development vision set in the SDF is: “To strive to enhance integrated socio-economic development to uplift communities focusing on areas with development potential where resources could be utilized most effectively and in a sustainable manner.”
A development model favouring spatial concentration with a selective cluster approach was followed in the formulation of the SDF, recognising the importance of rural villages in the provision of basic needs. This approach combined the development of urban nodes with rural service nodes / clusters. As part of this approach, settlements were clustered as follows:
- First order settlements: Zeerust / Ikageleng cluster
- Second order settlements: Dinokana cluster
- Third order settlements: Lehurutshe / Welbedacht cluster
- Fourth order settlements: remainder of settlements, including Groot Marico