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Wednesday Apr 10, 2013

Student ideas for Cape Town's 'road to nowhere'

Cape Town's Foreshore freeways may soon be unrecognisable as UCT students and the City of Cape Town are developing innovative ideas for the future of the Foreshore precinct.

The unfunished flyover in Green Point.

Students from UCT's engineering and built environment faculty have joined forces with the city to develop a conceptual future for the freeways that has been unfinished since the 1970s.

Mayoral committee member for transport, roads and stormwater Brett Heron spoke at a ceremony held last night to mark the start of the future Foreshore freeway project.

"We are very excited about this collaboration and greatly anticipate the kinds of proposals we will receive. We have placed no limitations and have expressed very few expectations and we look forward to receiving implementable and feasible solutions."

Herron said that the city could have issued tenders for the freeway project, but had chosen to work with the students.

"We are looking to be excited by bold thinking, creative energy and unfettered concepts that are aligned with the economic, mobility and social realities that we grapple with every day."

Professor Francis Petersen, faculty dean, said he hoped students would be able to use their creativity while gaining academic experience.

"It is important that there is academic value that you, as students, learn from this exercise. This is an opportunity to engage with the public to see if we can get people talking."

The project would be registered as one of the projects to be considered for the Cape Town World Design Capital event next year.

Petersen said three or four of the best ideas would be chosen to be presented to the city.

Some included humanising the Foreshore and transforming it into a "cultural harbour" where people could gather around pavement food stalls and participate in cultural activities.

Nhlanhla Ndlovu, a civil engineering student, said the students would start work on the project in July and he was glad to be involved in it.

Residents and commentators are encouraged to visit the Facebook site, and the city's website to comment.

Cape Argus


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