Water Platforms



41-RoofWater Platforms, Imizamo Yethu, Hout Bay (South Africa), 2013

University of Cape Town

The project is the design and construction of washing platforms in the Imizamo Yethu informal settlement in Hout Bay. In Imizamo Yethu, an estimated 9464 households make use of shared toilets and taps, with a service ratio of 61:1 households per toilet and a staggering 394:3 households per tap. The washing platforms are a way of providing additional services, more dignified places for water collection, spaces for the washing of clothes and the integration of these with shared toilet facilities where these are in close proximity. The platforms also serve as social gathering spaces and cleaner areas for children to play. This is the fourth platform of its kind.

The design of the platform and its parts has been integrated into the second-year course curriculum, and after designs had been developed and the necessary planning and community liaison had been completed, the project moved onto site. The students did earthworks, built formwork, installed reinforcing, mixed concrete, built walls, made mosaics, painted and even made a roof structure, all in conjunction with members of the local community.

Another interesting aspect of this year’s platform was the re-use of timber floor planks. These planks, removed from a building due to flooding, were used for a temporary art installation before being recycled again for use on the platform as a much-needed shading structure.

Client: The community of Imizamo Yethu

UCT staff members: Michael Louw (Project Leader), Kevin Fellingham, John Coetzee & Shafiek Matthews.

Students: Simon Atlas, Jordan Cai, Nabeel Enos, Simon Ferrandi, Julian Haysom, Jacob Holman, Bongane Madolo, Tapiwanashe Mativenga, Kirsten Moses, Alick Mwedzi, Zonke Mzi, Lwandile Ntlangulela, Min Ju Park, Nabilah Samaai, Anna Sango, Ivor Saville, Shaandip Seepaul, Marlene Senne, Sumayyah Shaikh, Graham Siebert, Mieke Vermaak, Marelise Vivier, Anthony Whitaker & Kaamil Willis.

Research Question: How can undergraduate teaching be enhanced through practical experience, while addressing the need for skills building and job creation in the user community, the need for service provision and the need for the re-use of materials.

+, 11-50, Architecture, Cape Town Univ., Curricular, Days, Initiated by institution, Permanent, South Africa, Sponsorship, Students with tutor, Undergraduate