Occupy / Edit / Grow Design Studio

In November 2016, Masiphumelele township in Cape Town was hit by a devastating fire, leaving 4,000 residents homeless. The community had lived in ‘shacks’ – informal structures constructed from wood and corrugated metal scraps. Occupy/Grow/Edit responded to the need for dignified, affordable, and quality housing, leveraging the potential of rapid and strategic planning, community capacity building, and local building systems. Students developed their projects across three scales: the individual housing unit and its aggregated form; neighborhood development, including public space and services; and urban systems designed to unify the township with the surrounding city.
During the seminar week trip, students: visited and mapped the affected site; spoke with local residents, government officials and NGO directors to develop a holistic planning strategy; participated in design and stakeholder workshops; and observed the environmental impact of certain housing decisions.

Design Studio and Seminar Week coordinator and tutor
With: Hans Rufer, Diego Ceresuela-Weisman

Chair of Architecture and Urban Design, ETH Zurich

Students: Aline Grossreider, Naksha Satish, Chandrabhanu DVNL, Rosa Steenkamp, Steve Dijkhuizen, Tim Pham

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