The final project for our 3 quarter session was that of Urban and Urban Environments, we were given a choice of 2 sites and expected to undertake the necessary research to and try gain an understanding of the urban condition of the area. From this we were expected to derive a building that dealt with housing in its context. All within 6 weeks.
The site chosen was located in Slovo Park, which is roughly 5km South of Kliptown in Gauteng (10km South of Soweto).
The settlement is considered ‘informal’ by government standards and has no formal services short of Standard Bank sponsored pit latrines on the street front of each house. Electricity was provided in the form of invasive floodlighting, as this was not integrated with the community’s consent the floodlight were disconnected and the electricity found uses elsewhere in the settlement through a process we came to know as ‘inyoka-ing’.
The community differs from others in their collective approach to take the first initial steps in being aided by government in their community organisational structures and their use of the grid structure from their neighboring ‘formal’ settlement (El Derado Park) to lay out their houses.
By doing so, they havemade their settlement more easily serviceable without disturbing the existing nature and fabric of the inhabitant lives.
Our study culminated in the framework analysis presented below.
Our recommendations were basically outlined in the treatment of the edges delicately to release identified energies within the community that would catalytic ally enhance the growth of the community from within in.
These edge treatments were identified along routes that linked the settlement to other developed settlements in the area.
These links were described to manifest in various ways, the most significant being a proposed system of community farms that would occupy the now vacant Harrington Spruit.
These connections and edge treatments would in effect link the site through nodal development to the greater JHB network.
Recently the entire project was presented to the Department of Human Settlements meeting in Pretoria.
The Slovo Park Group has now taken the combined principles of their work over the last 3 months and designed a small key intervention at the existing community center. The group hopes to complete the project by November this year and is busy arranging the necessary funding to complete the task.