The general atmosphere at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale, Reporting from the Front, is one of excitement, of subversion. The Fifteenth edition of the Biennale explicitly calls for instances where architecture is an “instrument of self-government, of humanist civilization, and a...
The thorny task of comparing crime rates across the world is tricky because legal interpretations vary. Sweden's definition of rape is not the same as America’s, for example. Murder however should be easier to record because there is an identifiable victim, something that can be counted. But the way in which this is done in poorer, often more corrupt countries makes truly comparable statistics hard to pin down. Where there are inefficient public health systems or police, it is even harder. — the Economist
"Latin American and Caribbean countries suffer disproportionately compared with elsewhere, mainly because of inequality, poor rule of law, impunity and corrupt institutions that are infiltrated by drug cartels. Only two countries outside the region feature on either chart, South Africa and the...
The Ponte saga is a classic South African story. Once a Jacuzzi-filled playground for the segregated white elite in the apartheid era, then falling into chaos in the 1990s as the wealthy fled to the suburbs, then the object of failed luxury-condo schemes, the tower is now undergoing a renaissance as an icon of Johannesburg’s urban revitalization. [...]
The hollow core began to fill with garbage and rubble – several stories high. — theglobeandmail.com
Alastair Graham hopes Violence Prevention Through Urban Upgrading, an initiative of the government of Cape Town, South Africa, will end better. He calls the effort, which has been revamping areas around train stations since 2006, part of “a package of potential solutions … either improving safety, or improving socioeconomic situation, or improving quality of life.” The project is aimed at curbing violence by augmenting the public spaces in which violent crime frequently occurs [...]. — nextcity.org
On Cape Town's waterfront at the southern tip of Africa, the world's biggest museum of contemporary art from across the continent is being carved from a conglomeration of concrete tubes nine storeys high. The $50 million (36.7 million euro) project to transform the grim functionality of 42 disused colonial grain silos into an ultramodern tribute to African creativity is driven by an international team of art experts and architects. — Ahram Online
The project – the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa – will be designed by British architect Thomas Heatherwick. "How do you turn 42 vertical concrete tubes into a place to experience contemporary culture?" the architect said. "We could either fight a building made of concrete tubes...
DESIGNING_SOUTHAFRICA (D_ZA) in collaboration with the Johannesburg Development Agency (JDA) and the Mayor of Johannesburg are proud to announce the construction of an urban pavilion designed by world-renowned architect David Adjaye OBE. To be constructed in a public space within the Park Station Precinct in Johannesburg’s inner city, the project will highlight this historical junction in the city, while activating underutilised public space using innovative design. — designingsouthafrica.com
On the World Design Capital (WDC) website, Cape Town presents some remarkable shack design projects aimed to solve a nationwide slum problem. Yet even with more than 200 informal settlements and 600,000 residents waiting for formal housing, the Western Cape has been slow to implement the 'transformative design' it celebrates. [...]
The backlog hit 2.1m units in 2013 and at least 1.9 million people (more than 10% of all households) live in shacks or other makeshift dwellings. — theguardian.com
The South African city is World Design Capital 2014, yet residents of Khayelitsha township live in cramped, unhygienic conditions. The need for long-promised urban reform is urgent. [...]
“Cape Town is a paradise for the minority, but I could hope for a city where everyone has access to the same opportunities that I have,” says Wolff. “Mandela may have postponed revolution – but for how much longer is the question.” — theguardian.com
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