This design is for a middle-range-income housing scheme in Bokaap, Cape Town. The area, also known as the Malay Quarter, has roots dating back to the 1600’s. It is famous for its small brightly painted Cape Dutch semi-detached cottages.
The site was a large sloping vacant lot in the heart of the Bokaap.
My design strategy was three-fold:
1: Hold the street edges of Yusaf Drive and Pentz Street with an urban edge, creating a protected core.
2: Create a series of linked platforms with graded degrees of intimacy.
3:The first platform creates a large public veranda at the top of Whale Street.
(The public buildings on the “large public veranda” would be designed in a subsequent phase, so they are unresolved in this design and merely suggest what their appropriate bulk and form would be).
I also used the following principals:
1: All spaces to be designed around human scale and use with careful gradation from public to private.
2: Create pedestrian friendly areas and traffic calming devices.
3: Spaces to be visually “sign-posted” for orientation through use of stairs, trees, arches etc.
4: Human surveillance opportunities created wherever possible.
5: All level changes double as seating.
6: Make use of roofs as private outdoor spaces.