Design the new face of the Naspers Centre building

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There are many ways to participate in World Design Capital, Cape Town 2014, but what about becoming a designer through entering a competition? The Design24 competition launched by Media2014 in late 2013 is welcoming all South African designers and non-designers to enter their concepts for a new facade for the Naspers Centre building, located in the heart of the Foreshore (if the Foreshore has a heart?).

When it was built by Sanlam in 1962, the Naspers Centre was the tallest commercial building in Africa and the tallest in Cape Town. Design24 comes with an implementation budget of R15million, which will be used to realise the winning design as the Naspers Centre joins its neighbours in changing the face of the city through sustainable design.

Need to know more about the Foreshore? Read up here

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This very exciting area will see the CTICC soon expand onto the current vacant parking lot, while the new Christian Barnard hospital is already under construction. Already, MyCiTi routes run through the area given the proximity to the Civic Centre Station, and bold plans are on the cards for nearby buildings, and the Artscape precinct.

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Last week I was honoured to be invited as one of the curators joining a highly respected and esteemed group from within the design, architecture and construction communities. The list includes architect Luyanda Mpahlwa of DesignSpaceAfrica; Rashiq Fataar; Paul Duncan, Editorial Director, World Design Capital 2014; Simon Gill, associate director and Buildings sector leader at the Cape Town office of multidisciplinary engineering consultancy Arup; and Sean Cowgill, quantity surveyor and director of the De Leeuw Group.

As curators we will need to “assess every entry against a list of weighted criteria including aesthetic qualities, sustainability, cost and construction viability” and “make recommendations to a second panel of judges from the senior leadership of both Media24 and Naspers, the media company’s holding company.” A main winner will be awarded R200,000 and two runners-up will receive R80,000 and R40,000 respectively.

The competition closes on 28 February so get designing!

For more information, visit, or follow @design24ct on Twitter, with hashtag #WDC317.

There is one comment

  1. David Bernhardi

    Not just this one but so many modern buildings in Cape Town are bland, concrete and glass with nothing to invite the eye to linger, no mouldings, no shadow lines nor interesting architectural detail. Let us hope something comes of this and spreads.

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