Bisho Massacre Memorial (2015)
The Contact Centre serves as a easily accessible gathering space and seeks to announce to visitors and residents that they have entered the Capital of the Eastern Cape Province. It forms an integral part of a first node of the “Bhisho Revitalisation Programme”.
Bhisho was a “new town” created out of nothing; built up on open pastureland to house the capital of the Ciskei homeland in the Apartheid 1980’s. Since then though, it has never quite escaped the sense that it is in some way a semi-abandoned, never-completed ghost town. The idea is that the Contact Centre is the first of a number of projects identified in an Urban Renewal Strategy to begin to “fill in the gaps” and act as a catalyst for other public and private sector projects to continue the pattern. The Contact Centre is used as an inter-departmental, inter-sectoral meeting place; a neutral space promoting communication across and between “silos”.
Positioned at the intersection of the R63 and Link Road, The Contact Centre is highly visible as an “architectural signpost”. It gives definition to the town by acting as an entrance gateway , together with the existing Bhisho Massacre Memorial site.
The building consists of flexible meeting and exhibition spaces. At ground level the building forms an extension to the development of the Bhisho Massacre Memorial, taking the concentric design of the memorial gardens into consideration. Through the creation of an expansive plaza, outdoor entertainment spaces along with information plaques; the design is an appropriate expression of the current development on site.
The building on ground level takes a circular form, with a contradicting rectangular shape presenting itself in the planning, once inside the building. The vertical circulation element is situated right at the entry point of the building, with the entrances on either side, forming the edges of a triple story void / natural ventilation stack system.
The circular form continues on the first floor. Both levels are enclosed with a continuous glazed curtain wall, which is offset from the floors. The second floor form changes from a circle to a more elongated oval shape, allowing a greater usable floor area. The entire Level is screened off with an external floor to roof timber louver system, to provide a solar shield.
Nelson Mandela Bay 2010 World Cup Stadium (2010)
Community Park Gqebera Township – (2010)
The Community Park is one of four components, funded by the NDPGrant, which together form the redevelopment of Fountain Road – the main road which runs through Gqebera Township.
In Gqebera township (just off Fountain Road) to the south of the Advice Centre there was a disused bus turning area. It comprised of a tarmac area, a vandalized toilet complex and other open space with limited traffic. Due to the limited traffic and its location close to residences, the site has proved adequate for a community park – an area that children can use away from traffic. The park sits between two quiet narrow streets, which help to calm traffic further.
Extra lighting was implemented to allow children to extend playing hours well into the evening and for general security. Shaded benches alongside trees and water features around the edges of the park allow for people to rest and enjoy the park.
While grassed areas give the children an opportunity to play soccer, the paved areas can be used for future public art displays or public entertainment. A basketball facility has also been included.
2010 FIFA World Cup Legacy Icons – (2009)
While most of the FIFA 2010 World Cup spends were focussed on delivering the Stadium and related public transport infrastructure, some effort was made by the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, to erect place marking “Icons”. These were erected prior to the event to help build excitement and anticipation for this massive sporting tournament. Part of this programme of icon building included two stainless steel forms on the traffic circles outside the Port Elizabeth International Airport.
The design was required to draw attention, but in such a way as to remain transparent enough as not to be a traffic safety hazard. It was necessary to develop these ideas along with the roads engineers who were working under significant time pressure to ensure the roadwork’s were completed in time for the massive influx of visitors to the city. The design expresses and reflects the lasting impact that the tournament has had on the city Port Elizabeth. Almost like war memorials reflect the lasting impact of a war that has long passed.
Many visitors to Port Elizabeth during the world cup arrived via the airport and were immediately greeted with these gleaming stainless steel forms, giving a sense that the entire city was a tournament venue and not just the stadium.
The “flags” pointing in the direction have removable sleeves. In 2010 these sleeves reflect the flags of the nations that participated in Port Elizabeth, during the FIFA 2010 tournament. However the sleeves can be replaced with other marketing material during other future events of significance in the city. (For example they may be replaced with a floral design if PE hosts a big flower show!)
The stainless steel forms carry out their “place marking” function both day and night, when after dark the structure is illuminated from the inside with low energy light fittings. The resulting luminescent display has become a popular favourite of both residents and visitors to the city.