Change the world


2019 second-year Architecture students recently unveiled their portable, multi-functional, beautifully designed crèche, constructed from mainly recycled and foraged materials, in an informal settlement of Airport Valley in Walmer Township.
The students worked solidly on the building process for 10 weeks, in all weather conditions and even on Sundays.

They built the crèche on campus and it was then dismantled, taken to Walmer and re-assembled.

Called Crèche13, it was conceived and designed by the students as part of their academic curriculum, in collaboration with the Airport Valley community and Walmer Angel Projects.

It is a fine example of sustainable, social enterprise architecture.

The Airport Valley community identified an existing crèche that looks after about 40 pre-school children in a shack construction in dire need of attention in Airport Valley as the site for Crèche13.

The innovative project drew on a pre-manufactured “kit-of-parts” strategy, using low tech construction techniques, shipping containers and cost-efficient and recycled materials foraged from demolition sites.  The only materials that were’nt recycled or foraged were the roof trusses and main structural girders.

The architecture reinterprets the use of industrial materials to create a low-cost, dignified, habitable building that also contributes delight in the informal settlement of Airport Valley, which is typified by dire living conditions.

Architect and lecturer, John Andrews, and his students costed the construction of Crèche13 at an incredibly economical R288 000, with the added commitment of raising the funds to build it.

This was a wonderful example of combining all aspects of what the university experience should be about - learning, doing and helping others.

Read more about this project on page 30 of the recent Learning and Teaching Publication


Contact information
Mr Mukhtar Raban
Lecturer, Humanising Pedagogy Project Coordinator
Tel: 27 41 504 3249