Friday, July 10, 2009

6 families in, 4 to come...

The Pillay family - proud new owners of a home!

Everyone on the balcony of the Pillay's new house and yes, they have a sea view! From the balcony you can actually see Muizenberg's cove, all along to Fishhoek it seems...

A warm winter afternoon on site in Freedom Park

Mike and the architect are here to sign 2 more families into their homes - handing over keys etc.

Stunning colours. Vibrant and optimistic - just like this project initiative!

Finishing touches on the paint work. The yellow wall of joy... The red door of opportunity...

The row of 10 colourful houses are not only filling a big empty space in the Freedom Park neighbourhood, but also in the lives of the beneficiaries. All the families will have moved into their new homes by next week!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Progress at Freedom Park

The final houses at Freedom Park will be ready for handover early next week! Very exciting...
Here's a view of the rear elevations of our street of houses:

Balconies, which had to be dropped from the original design due to cost considerations, have been donated by MMA architects - these really add great value!

Beneficiaries Mary Lackey (L) and Moerida Pillay watch as finishing touches are put on their new homes, which they helped to build with their own hands.

(Photos: Rosemary Lombard)

Monday, May 25, 2009

Insert aired on Cape Town TV - 18 May 2009

The 10x10 housing project from Design Indaba on Vimeo.

The award-winning Design Indaba 10x10 Low-Cost Housing Project has gifted 10 homes to families in Freedom Park, a township near Cape Town, with the aim of exploring innovative low-cost housing solutions. Of the 10 architectural teams handpicked from South Africa and international alumni of previous Design Indaba conferences, the solution by Luyanda Mpahlwa of MMA Architects was implemented first in this pro bono challenge. The houses are constructed out of sandbags using the eco-beam timber frame system, utilising sustainable design, construction and operation principles in answer to the need for affordable and innovative housing for the urban poor.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

10x10 Housing selected to participate in International Biennale Rotterdam 2009 - Squat City

We were invited to enter the 2009 Rotterdam Architecture Biennale's Squat City competition, and we have now been selected to participate! The following are the competition's criteria as outlined in the call for contribution:
The projects submitted for the Squat City Competition should contribute the agenda of the 'Open City' by proposing inventive design strategies and techniques pertaining to informal urban development.

The call goes out to projects from the fields of architecture and urban design that are based on or that support bottom-up practices and that encourage the self-empowerment of local actors, and that help formalize and legalize such developments.

They qualify by being:
- economically sustainable, e.g. by creating jobs and supporting
social business.
- ecologically and energetically sustainable, e.g. by reducing
waste. or energy and material consumption.
- socially sustainable, e.g. by creating education facilities and
enabling communities to become self-reliant.
All these criteria are congruent with the aims of the Design Indaba 10x10 Low Cost Housing Project, so Squat City is an exciting opportunity to interact with other like-minded initiatives. Watch this space for notification of our online mini-documentary that will be going up at

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

10x10 House featured on's Best of Green: Design + Architecture list

Luyanda Mpahlwa's 10x10 design is featured as Best Third-World Design on's annual Best of Green: Design + Architecture list. Check us out here.

The Design Indaba 10x10 Low Cost Housing project featured a year ago on Treehugger, too. You'll find the first post here.

Photo: Rosemary Lombard

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Design Indaba 10x10 Housing included in Green Design book

The Design Indaba 10x10 Low Cost Housing Project is included in Dezeen editor-in-chief Marcus Fairs' new book, Green Design! Buy a copy online at Dezeenbooks.

Here's the blurb from the publishers, Carlton Books:
From vast architectural projects to modest one-off pieces of salvaged furniture, "Green Design" shows how the design world is responding to the environmental challenges of the twenty-first century. Emerging trends in green design are covered, such as recycling and ethical sourcing. Also considered is the parallel issue of social sustainability, where the welfare of factory workers is given equal importance to environmental issues, and the idea of Cradle to Cradle enterprises, where a product can be reused over several product histories or unending 'loops'. By showcasing existing green innovations as well as visionary projects that will be built in the coming years, including the world's first zero-carbon city, "Green Design" paints a future where technology and ethics merge.

About the Author

Lecturer, entrepreneur, curator and award-winning journalist Marcus Fairs, formerly founding editor of icon magazine, is editor of online design magazine Dezeen. He has appeared on BBC TV, notably in his documentary about Philippe Starck (2003) and Home (2006). In autumn 2007 Marcus devised and curated the Trash Luxe exhibition of recycled design at Liberty's London. He lives in London, England.

Dezeen are giving away ten copies of Green Design. To stand a chance to win one, go HERE. The competition closes on 8 April 2009.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

10x10 in Design Museum Exhibition

The Brit Insurance Designs of the Year (BIDOY) exhibition is currently on at London's Design Museum. It features the 10x10 Low-Cost Housing project among an array of other shortlisted designs in a range of categories. Here's more about the exhibition from the catalogue, which I received in the mail today:

"The Design Museum and its sponsors are very pleased to present Brit Insurance Designs of the Year, an international exhibition and award that is now in its second year. The exhibition sets out to give an overview of the significant achievements in design and architecture over the last twelve months, where our audience will have the opportunity to experience these feats hands on as well as through this catalogue.

Last year, the winning projects were a testament to the inspiring diversity that design as a whole represents and the shortlist this year is no less impressive... Across the categories, there is this year a sense of climates in flux, be it cultural, political, economic or environmental, where the design output expresses this through both subtle and more explicit processes and applications. But despite the current financial down turn that is all too real, the design stories in this exhibition and award demonstrate that there is still a great sense of optimism as well as the power of using design processes as a tool to drive ideas forward - whether they are for commercial or more experimental purposes."

Here's 10x10 Housing's page in the exhibition catalogue (please click on the image to see a larger version):

If you're in London, be sure to get to the Design Museum, Shad Thames, London SE1 2YD before 14 June 2009 to catch this fascinatingly diverse exhibition.