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House Liebmann / Daffonchio and Associates

01:00 - 27 July, 2014
House Liebmann / Daffonchio and Associates, Courtesy of Daffonchio and Associates
Courtesy of Daffonchio and Associates
  • Architects

  • Location

    Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Principal Architect

    Enrico Daffonchio
  • Project Architect

    Leigh Maurtin
  • Photographs

    Courtesy of Daffonchio and Associates

Courtesy of Daffonchio and Associates Courtesy of Daffonchio and Associates Courtesy of Daffonchio and Associates Courtesy of Daffonchio and Associates +16

House 02, Hyde Park / Daffonchio & Associates Architects

01:00 - 24 July, 2014
House 02, Hyde Park  / Daffonchio & Associates Architects, © Adam Letch
© Adam Letch

© Adam Letch © Adam Letch © Adam Letch © Adam Letch +15

House 01, Hyde Park / Daffonchio & Associates Architects

01:00 - 21 July, 2014
House 01, Hyde Park  / Daffonchio & Associates Architects  , © Adam Letch
© Adam Letch

© Adam Letch © Adam Letch © Adam Letch © Adam Letch +14

Aloe Ridge House / Metropole Architects

01:00 - 10 July, 2014
Aloe Ridge House / Metropole Architects, © Grant Pitcher
© Grant Pitcher
  • Architects

  • Location

    Pennington, South Africa
  • Design Architect

    Nigel Tarboton
  • Project Architect

    David Louis
  • Project Technician

    Simon Wayne
  • Area

    300.0 sqm
  • Project Year

    2014
  • Photographs

© Grant Pitcher © Grant Pitcher © Grant Pitcher © Grant Pitcher +34

Students and Community Members Come Together to Construct Theater in Cape Town Township

00:00 - 28 June, 2014
Students and Community Members Come Together to Construct Theater in Cape Town Township, Courtesy of Future Cape Town
Courtesy of Future Cape Town

The Guga S’Thebe Arts and Cultural Centre in Langa, Cape Town's oldest township, is expanding to include a theatre exclusively for children and adolescents. The main component of the theatre, set for completion this fall, will be a large, multi-functional space for hosting performances. The project, a collaborative effort between future users and international architecture students, is aimed at stimulating sustainable development while widening the possibilities for the target demographic. To check out more project images, continue after the break.   

In Images: South Africa's Stunning Treetop Walkway

00:00 - 28 June, 2014
In Images: South Africa's Stunning Treetop Walkway , © Adam Harrower
© Adam Harrower

The much anticipated Treetop Walkway through the Arboretum in Cape Town's Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden is now open to the public. Located 11 metres above the ground, the galvanised steel and timber structure offers breathtaking views from the treetops. The project, a collaboration between Mark Thomas Architects and Henry Fagan & Partners consulting engineers, has been nicknamed Boomslang - a large, highly venomous African tree snake - due to its elevated, twisting form. Check out the stunning photographs by Adam Harrower, a horticulturist at the garden, after the break. 

© Adam Harrower © Adam Harrower © Adam Harrower © Adam Harrower +10

Spotlight South Africa: Three Designs Instilling Dignity & Defeating Stigma

01:00 - 6 June, 2014
Mamelodi Pod, a home and temporary soccer club with solar electricity and rain water harvesting. Image Courtesy of Architecture for a Change
Mamelodi Pod, a home and temporary soccer club with solar electricity and rain water harvesting. Image Courtesy of Architecture for a Change

How do you undo centuries of inequality? How do you overturn an inequality so ingrained in a culture that it manifests itself physically - in the architecture of its homes and in the misshapen nature of its cities? 

This is the question post-apartheid South Africa has been struggling to answer for the past twenty years. And while the government has made many concerted efforts, for far too many the situation has remained largely the same. 

However, there are currents of change afoot. Many who have been marginalized are now working to defeat the stigma and legitimize their communities, and they are enlisting architects to the fray. From an organization in Capetown that aims to transform the role of the South African designer, to another in Johannesburg that uses design to legitimize informal architecture, to a project in one of the most violent townships in South Africa that has transformed a community, the following three projects are making a difference for the users who have the most to gain from their designs and design-thinking. All three represent not only the power of design to defeat stigma and instill dignity, but also the power of communities to incite these projects, make them their own, and enable them to thrive.

Vame / SAOTA

01:00 - 6 May, 2014
Vame / SAOTA, Courtesy of SAOTA
Courtesy of SAOTA
  • Architects

  • Location

    Yzerfontein, South Africa
  • Architect in Charge

    Stefan Antoni Olmesdahl Truen
  • Area

    828.0 sqm
  • Project Year

    2006
  • Photographs

    Courtesy of SAOTA

Courtesy of SAOTA Courtesy of SAOTA Courtesy of SAOTA Courtesy of SAOTA +14

Inside Johannesburg's Infamous Ponte City Tower

00:00 - 11 April, 2014

The history of Johannesburg's Ponte City Apartments is a provocative one: built in 1975 and designed by Manfred Hermer as the height of luxurious (white-only) living in South Africa, the continent's tallest residential building soon became a notorious vertical slum, filled with crime and poverty, its signature hollow core re-purposed as a trash dump and a suicide drop.

AISJ Aquatic Center / Flansburgh Architects

01:00 - 26 March, 2014
AISJ Aquatic Center / Flansburgh Architects, © Stephen O'Raw
© Stephen O'Raw

© Stephen O'Raw © Stephen O'Raw © Stephen O'Raw © Stephen O'Raw +16

Urban Think Tank Takes on Housing in South Africa's Townships

00:00 - 20 March, 2014

Despite 20 years of government promises to improve the quality of housing following the end of apartheid, for many in South Africa's townships there has been little noticeable change. This is not to say that the South African government has not been working to meet these goals; however, the scale of the problem is so large, and with population growth and migration, the challenge is only getting greater.

That's why Urban Think Tank, in collaboration with ETH Zurich and South African NGO Ikhayalami, have worked together on a design for a more immediate, incremental solution called "Empower Shack."

Heatherwick to Transform Cape Town's Grain Silo into Contemporary Art Museum

00:00 - 15 March, 2014
Heatherwick to Transform Cape Town's Grain Silo into Contemporary Art Museum, Interior. Image Courtesy of Heatherwick Studio
Interior. Image Courtesy of Heatherwick Studio

Imagine forty-two, 33 meter high concrete tubes each with a diameter of 5.5 meters, with no open space to experience the volume from within. The brief from the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA) for London-based Heatherwick Studio was to "reimagine the Grain Silo Complex at Cape Town's V&A Waterfront with an architectural intervention inspired by its own historic character," calling for a "solution unique for Africa" in order to create "the highest possible quality of exhibition space for the work displayed inside." Heatherwick's response will be the creation of a "a new kind of museum in an African context."

Floating in Space / W design architecture studio

01:00 - 13 March, 2014
Floating in Space / W design architecture studio , © Jamie Thom
© Jamie Thom

© DOOK © DOOK © DOOK © DOOK +12

The International School of Hout Bay / Luis Mira Architects + StudioMAS + Sergio Aguilar

07:00 - 22 February, 2014
The International School of Hout Bay / Luis Mira Architects + StudioMAS + Sergio Aguilar, © Wieland Gleich
© Wieland Gleich
  • Architects

  • Location

    Cape Town, South Africa
  • Design Team

    Sean Mahoney (StudioMas), Michael Lumby (StudioMas), Charlton Botha (StudioMas), Sergio Aguilar (Plus Arquitectura), Katie Irvine and Luis Mira
  • Principal Agent

    Luis Mira Architects
  • Area

    1610.0 sqm
  • Project Year

    2013
  • Photographs

© Wieland Gleich © Wieland Gleich © Wieland Gleich © Wieland Gleich +42

From Grain Silo to Shipping Container Student Housing

17:30 - 17 February, 2014
From Grain Silo to Shipping Container Student Housing, Courtesy of Citiq Property Developers, via Inhabitat
Courtesy of Citiq Property Developers, via Inhabitat

Inhabitat has just featured an unlikely new student housing project in Johannesburg: Mill Junction, a student complex that consists of two former grain silos topped with shipping containers. According to its developers, Citiq Property Developers, the energy and money-saving project re-directs money towards communal facilities, proving popular with students. As a result, Mill Junction, the second shipping-container housing project built by the Developers, may be the second of many more. More info at Inhabitat.

Architecture Otherwhere - Durban 2014

00:00 - 23 January, 2014
Architecture Otherwhere - Durban 2014

On the twentieth anniversary of South Africa’s re-birth, the UIA Congress will celebrate the African profession as a meaningful contributor to world architecture and thought leadership in city development; as well as the continent’s contribution in the affairs and evolution of architecture globally.

Finalist Proposal for First Public University in South Africa Since Apartheid

00:00 - 23 December, 2013
Finalist Proposal for First Public University in South Africa Since Apartheid, Courtesy of TC Design Architects
Courtesy of TC Design Architects

TC Design Architects have been announced as one of the four winners in a country-wide architectural competition to design the University of Mpumalanga in Nelspruit, the first public university in South Africa since the end of Apartheid. Of 147 architectural practices, the Department of Higher Education and Training has narrowed the pool of entries down to TC Design, Conco Bryan Architects, Cohen and Garson, and Gapp Architects & Urban Designers.

More on TC Design's proposal after the break…

What Will Be Mandela’s Spatial Legacy?

01:00 - 9 December, 2013
Rendering for Greenpoint Stadium. Image Courtesy of http://bensnewgreenpointstadium.webs.com/
Rendering for Greenpoint Stadium. Image Courtesy of http://bensnewgreenpointstadium.webs.com/

 From the window of an airplane it's all too plain that apartheid has been deeply written into the South African landscape. Even the smallest town appears as two distinct towns. One features a spacious grid of tree-lined streets and comfortable houses surrounded by lawns. The other, its shriveled twin, some distance away but connected by a well-traveled road, consists of a much tighter grid of dirt roads lined with shacks. Trees are a rarity, lawns non-existent. This doubling pattern appears no matter the size of the population: here, the white town; over there, the black township. -- Lisa Findley, “Red & Gold: A Tale of Two Apartheid Museums.”

There are few systems of government that relied so heavily upon the delineations of space than the Apartheid government of South Africa (1948-1994). Aggressively wielding theories of Modernism and racial superiority, South Africa’s urban planners didn’t just enforce Apartheid, they embedded it into every city - making it a daily, degrading experience for South Africa’s marginalized citizens.

When Nelson Mandela and his party, the African National Congress, were democratically elected to power in 1994, they recognized that one of the most important ways of diminishing Apartheid’s legacy would be spatial: to integrate the white towns and the black townships, and revive those “shriveled twin[s].” 

As we remember Mandela - undoubtedly the most important man in South Africa’s history - and ponder his legacy, we must also consider his spatial legacy. It is in the physical, spatial dimensions of South Africa’s towns and cities that we can truly see Apartheid’s endurance, and consider: to what extent have Mandela’s words of reconciliation and righteous integration, truly been given form?