Denis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects

Denis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects

Denis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects - Facade, CityscapeDenis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects - Wood, FacadeDenis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects - ChairDenis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects - Windows, Facade, CityscapeDenis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects - More Images+ 18

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Text description provided by the architects. Located in the vibrant city centre of Durban, South Africa, a few steps from Warwick Triangle and close to several liberation heritage sites such as the Juma Musjid (Mosque) the Denis Hurley Centre was conceived as a contemporary facility to uplift and serve the community - a welcoming refuge to all, regardless of background, faith or nationality.

The building’s diverse and multifunctional character reflects the complexity, vibrancy and dynamism of the context and its users - giving hope and aid to those most in need and a living memorial in honour of a great Archbishop. 

Ground Floor Plan

The Denis Hurley Centre is on a small and complex site, triangular in shape with 0m building lines and adjacent to a heritage icon - Emmanuel Cathedral.  All of these factors provided design inspiration, resulting in a contemporary building that is highly responsive to its context, climate and community.

Utilising the nature of the triangular site to create interconnected spaces around a centralised atrium, the design of the building reinforces the Denis Hurley Centre’s aim for an integrated community space, open to all.

Denis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects - Chair
© Angela Buckland Photography

The atrium brings natural light to all circulation spaces within the building, thereby improving their spatial quality.  It serves as the lung of the building by providing natural ventilation to most internal spaces.

The building envelope has been designed to act as a breathable skin, maximising natural light and natural ventilation, whilst protecting it from direct sun penetration.

Diagram Ground Floor Plan
Diagram First Floor Plan

Exaggerating the thickness of the exterior walls, to create a deep recess for long narrow windows, allows for passive solar control along the eastern, northern and western facades - resulting in a cool building throughout the year with minimal mechanical climate control.

Denis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects - Wood, Facade
© Angela Buckland Photography

The southern façade maximises the view of the adjacent Emmanuel Cathedral from inside the centre. The highly reflective curtain wall creates subtle reflections of the Cathedral, bringing contemporary and heritage architecture together in harmony.

The building envelope is modulated with a clear vertical rhythm in response to the building context and in particular, to the monumental proximity of Emmanuel Cathedral.

Denis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects - Windows, Facade, Cityscape
© Angela Buckland Photography

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Project location

Address:2 Cathedral Road, Durban, 4001, South Africa

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Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
About this office
Cite: "Denis Hurley Centre / Ruben Reddy Architects" 07 Jul 2015. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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