UCT Landscape Architecture students win 3 out of 4 prizes in international design competition

Congratulations to University of Cape Town Landscape Architecture students


Five Master of Landscape Architecture students entered an international student competition for the redesign of a portion of the Nairobi River running through the centre of Nairobi.

The students proposed creative solutions to the challenges facing cities and the design and planning of rivers that run through them.

Three of the students were placed in the top four, including wining first prize of $1000.

The competition was judged by five international landscape architects with the award ceremony being held at the International Federation of Landscape Architects Africa Symposium held in the first week of October in Nairobi.

The student’s projects were praised for the high quality of the landscape architectural concepts, the level of innovation, the depth of ecological aspects and the feasibility of the overall projects.

Prize winners:

Winning entry: Ke Lu – University of Cape Town ($1000)

Project title: Reincarnation Landscape

Click thumbnails to view large..

Runner up: Ancunel Steyn – University of Cape Town ($600)

Project title: Metamorphosis: Transforming river, transforming lives

Special Prize (Most environmentally responsive design):
Julia McLachlan – University of Cape Town ($500)

Project title: Flowing waters: Cultural and knowledge streams

Switching on: Africa’s vast new tech opportunity

A somewhat dated article on Africa’s technological rebirth which has been the subject of numerous posts in this blog and in other observant media and net channels for some while now, is still interesting in that the innovation and action found in African Cities which can be seen beyond the surface “noise”  that usually lmakes European and American observers cry out “hopeless” and look no deeper. The late 20th Century project by Rem Koolhaas’  Harvard Project on the City resulting in 2005 DVD of LAGOS which I only recently saw is a fitting contrast even though Rem points out in it how over the 4 years of their project they could see deeper into the City and saw how it was changing ,  By Pete Guest  on Wired.co.uk

In 2011, visitors to Africa looking for war, famine and pestilence have to dig a lot deeper than in the past. At Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, hardened missionaries have been replaced by gap-year students clustered around iPads, and on the streets the bad old days have given way to another holy trinity: Premier League football, Toyota Hiace minibuses and cellphones.

Isis Nyong'o, Nairobi

Africa’s national economies have grown consistently over the last decade. Even in the depths of the financial crisis, GDP growth exceeded three percent: more than in any other region of the world. Improvements in security, Chinese investments and soaring commodity prices have all played a part in transforming the continent’s prospects. Continue reading

Politics needs to be part of the global urban agenda

From The Global Urbanist International

National housing and urban development authorities meet in Nairobi this week to set the agenda for UN-HABITAT for the next two years. But what they won’t be talking much about is how the conflicting pressures of domestic politics makes a lot of that agenda impossible to fulfil. How can we put domestic politics back on the table?

With national representatives from around the world meeting at UN-HABITAT’s Nairobi headquarters for its biannual Governing Council this week, it’s a good time to reflect on the global urban agenda.

But what is a global urban agenda? Does the world even have a conscious agenda for its cities? What should it consist of? What should our priorities be? Can we really have a global agenda, given the diversity of cities in the world and the issues they face? Continue reading