River Park Housing Project

As a consequence of the new political dispensation in 1994, the Johannesburg City Council embarked on a project to construct “top structures” (buildings) on already proclaimed and serviced land designated for housing. This particular development was called River Park and was located just across a tributary of the Jukskei River from the “established” white suburban area of Lombardy East and on the east bank of the river opposite Alexandra, a traditionally black township.
In the first phase of the proposed 700 family scheme, 150 units were built and occupied.

The houses were double storey, well orientated and provided good quality exterior space in the landscape whilst contributing to an active streetscape. Maximum internal volume was achieved within the limited budget constraints, giving a sense of lightness and scale. The proposal demonstrates that low-cost, high-density housing can be built with sensitivity to good design.

Fascinating Zanzibar Architecture

I recently had the opportunity to take a much needed break from work. I decided on Zanzibar, a majestic island, in close proximity to the island of Tanzania in East Africa. Zanzibar is renowned for their magnificent beaches. It gives the very best of what the Indian Ocean has to offer. I used a fantastic local company called Discover Zanzibar to arrange my Zanzibar accommodation. Although there are loads of things to do in Zanzibar from lazing around on the white washed beaches to an array of water activities, I nevertheless spent most of my time studying the local architecture and its influences.

Cheetah’s Rock

At Cheetah’s Rock you are guaranteed to get up close and personal with the wildlife creatures which enables you to interact with them on a personal level. You are able to get up close to various wildlife animals including a Zebra, White Lion, Cheetah, Hyena, Lemur and even a Bush Baby. The tour includes educating guests on how the animals are trained. The guests can then feed and touch the animals, all except the White Lion for safety reasons.

Nungwi Beach

Nungwi Beach Hotel is a beach and spa resort overlooking the majestic Indian Ocean. The resort offers little thatched beach huts situated beneath soft white sand. Surrounded by an array of tropical greenery. This beautiful resort is laden with palm trees giving you the feeling and experience of a true tropical paradise. Snorkelling and scuba diving is a must if you would like to experience the beautiful creatures beneath the turquoise sea.

Zanzibar food & spice tour

The Zanzibar food and spice tour is a lovely way to get to know the indigenous people of Zanzibar. It is also a great way to experience their culture, customs, and beliefs. Spices form a very important role in the people of Zanzibar’s life. They incorporate spices such as cinnamon, cloves to name a few not just in their food, but for many other things as well, such as using it for health purposes. Experience first-hand how these herbs and spices are grown and farmed. You can even taste, feel and smell the spices.

Stone Town

Stone Town is the hustle and bustle of Zanzibar. Recently declared a World Heritage Site. The streets are narrow and filled with crowds of people selling various items. This historic piece of Zanzibar has recently been restored to what it once looked like many years ago. From an architect’s perspective, Stone Town is host to some of the most interesting hotels in Zanzibar .

Prison Island

This was previously a prison for the slaves of Zanzibar. It was also used as a quarantine base. It has now been turned into a traveller’s paradise. This is now the home for the giant tortoises of Zanzibar. You are able to feed these animals. A walk through the leafy forests will give you a variety of species of birds, and other winged creatures. There are snorkelling activities too, for those interested in the marine life below the beautiful Zanzibar sea. Drinks and a meal on the beach side restaurant are just a few of the activities you can do on Prison Island.

House of Wonders Museum

The House of Wonders Museum is an extraordinary way to learn about the history of Swahili. The museum gets its name from being the first to get electricity and the first to entertain an elevator. This was once the lavish home to Sultan Barghash. It now hosts a variety of entertaining objects such as a vintage car and even a sailing boat. Walking through this museum is like taking a walk back into time.

Dolphin Spotting

The island of Zanzibar is the perfect location for dolphin spotting. There are no shortages of these majestic creatures which can be found in the shallow water along the coast. You can see both humpback as well as bottle-nose dolphins. There are tours offered which enables you to swim with these beautiful creatures.

House Kennedy

The House is situated in a remarkable setting overlooking a beautiful stretch of unspoilt forested coast. A vertical forest of timber columns extends from the steeply sloping ground to support a series of raised wooden decks facing the Indian Ocean.

A cluster of tiled mono-pitched roofs clearly articulates the volume of each space. The exposed roof structure reinforces the strong Ndebele inspired diagonal geometry heightening the drama of the views to the ocean. The interior fragments at the periphery to incorporate a fringe of external decks, dissolving the boundary between inside and out.

The living area is treated as a single volume, the roof sloping to create space for bed deck mezzanines, allowing for many combinations of sleeping arrangements. Subtle changes in levels of the floors and ceilings, ensures that spaces are well defined yet have a strong vertical and horizontal continuity.

The house creates a unique environment that reconciles abstract architectural ideas with the need for ordinary, everyday living.

house kennedy