January 2018

Lagos Ignites New Vigour Against Building Collapse

By Bertram Nwannekanma

The Southwest zone of the country had the highest record of building collapses in the last 8years, with Lagos accounting for about 134 deaths and 159 injuries.

With an average of five deaths recorded yearly in Nigeria as a result of building collapse, the incidence has become a major albatross to efforts at reducing the nation’s stipulated 23 million housing deficits.

A survey of building collapse in 2015 showed that an average of 27 buildings caved in 14 months. Out of these, 175 deaths occurred while 427 others were injured. 

READ MORE: http://guardian.ng/features/lagos-ignites-new-vigour-against-building-co...

Boulevard De La Republique - Construction Works Resume

By Christopher Jator

The company now executing the project has a timeframe of eight months to complete the work.

Heaps of gravel, stones and other material were visible on the extended stretch of the Boulevard de la Republique in Akwa Nord of the economic capital. Trucks continue to bring in material for the construction over the week-end although no caterpillars could be seen on the site.

A section of one of the lanes is covered with interlocking road tiles and another with tar. No work is being carried out on the other lane much of which is still bare. About midway the 2,500 metres extended road is a signboard indicating that the company now executing the project is Groupement Jerry/BOFAS Sarl.

READ MORE: http://allafrica.com/stories/201801311053.html

Japan to Build Rwf68 Million Dormitory for Ruhango School

By Hudson Kuteesa

The government of Japan has extended a grant worth $81,857 (over Rwf68m) to build a dormitory for Saint Joseph Nzuki, a Ruhango-based catholic vocational training school.

The dormitory will be completed in a period of six months and will accommodate 400 students.

Signing the grant, recently, at the Japanese embassy in Kigali, Takayuki Miyashita, the Japanese envoy to Rwanda echoed the importance of the support for the school that has about 300 children, half of whom are orphans who are exempted from paying tuition and accommodation fees.

READ MORE: http://allafrica.com/stories/201801310042.html

Construction of Market in Progress At Sittanunku Village

The construction of women's market at Sittanunku Village, Upper Nuimi District, by Jerreh Sittanunku Development Association (JSDA) is progressing, JSDA chairman said.

Sanusi Darboe said if not for the intermittent delays in gathering funds, the construction, which began in December last year, is going smoothly, thanks to the support of the village youth and women.

Sittanunku is at the centre of villages all of which do not have market.

"Therefore, we embark on market construction not only for Sittanunku but for the other villages as well for they can also bring their agricultural produce and other products to the marketfor sale," Mr Darboe said.

READ MORE: http://foroyaa.gm/construction-of-market-in-progress-at-sittanunku-village/

Construction Worker Dies After Being Buried in Collapsed Trench

A 46-year-old construction worker died after being trapped in a 10m-deep trench in Giyani, Limpopo, the Hawks said on Tuesday.

Three workers were working in the trench when it caved in, burying them under soil on Monday. They had been working on a construction site for a new mall, spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Robert Netshiunda said.

"It is alleged that other colleagues tried to help the trapped workers, but only two were rescued alive. The third worker was certified dead at the scene."

READ MORE: https://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/construction-worker-dies-after-b...

Lekki Port Begins Construction of U.S.$1.5 Billion Facility

By Sulaimon Salau

The Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise (LPLE), has commenced major construction works on the Lekki Deep Sea Port in Lagos State.

The facility, estimated to gulp about $1.5billion and located within the Lagos Free Trade Zone (LFTZ), is expected to be one of the most modern ports, supporting the burgeoning trade across Nigeria and the entire West African region as well as providing the connection to global shipping network.

The General Manager, Projects, LPLE, Steven Heukelom, who disclosed this during an inspection by the Acting Director General, Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), noted that the breakwater construction is one of the largest components of the port construction.

READ MORE: http://allafrica.com/stories/201801310811.html

City of Cape Town destroys new shacks on Khayelitsha land

Residents say they cleaned up an illegal dump to build their shacks

By Vincent Lali

Photo of demolished shacks
Residents’ belongings were left in the open after their shacks were destroyed on Monday. Photo: Vincent Lali

The City of Cape Town has moved against Zwelitsha residents who erected shacks on municipal land last week.

The homeless residents, mostly backyarders, had cleared bushes and built their homes on the empty land. But on Monday members of the Anti Land Invasion Unit moved in and destroyed the shacks.

“They should have told us to remove our shacks ourselves instead of destroying them,” said Nomfundo Bhadeli, 26.

“If they had told us in advance that they would destroy our shacks, I would have dismantled my shack properly and set it up in a backyard elsewhere.”

Interviewed on Monday, Bhadeli, who moved into her new shack a week ago with her five-year-old daughter and her one-year-old son, said she had no place to stay after the demolition of her shack.

“I don’t know where I will sleep today,” she said.

Bhadeli said members of the unit had thrown away her paraffin and destroyed her teacups and her stove.

Nosihle Somdaka, 34, said members of the unit had not told her to remove her shack before they demolished it.

Architects Broke a Sweat Designing These 13 Striking Gyms & Fitness Facilities

[ By SA Rogers in Architecture & Offices & Commercial. ]

Your sweaty neighborhood gym has nothing on these beautifully designed fitness facilities full of multi-story climbing walls, skybridge pools, dramatic boxing rings, nightclub-style lighting and cool typographic murals. It looks like the architects and designers had as much fun dreaming up these beautiful modern fitness centers as clients get to have using them. Do yoga in a glass box overlooking Manhattan, lift heavy in a former communist monument, test your arm strength in the world’s largest bouldering gym or kickbox in a room that looks like a sci-fi movie set.

Wellness Sky in Belgrade, Serbia by 4of7

Five facts that prove South Africa's nuclear power plan should die

South Africa's Jacob Zuma and Russia's Vladimir Putin meeting in 2015. Should South Africa be relying on Russia for nuclear energy? Reuters/Ivan Sekretarev

Under the presidency of Jacob Zuma, South Africa has been trying to implement a massive new nuclear programme. The initiative stood against a growing body of evidence pointing to the fact that nuclear isn’t needed, is too costly and is hard to finance. There is also the fact that the case for renewables looks increasingly favourable than nuclear. And last year, civil society groups secured a court order that halted the nuclear build programme temporarily on grounds that government had not followed due consultative process.

But Zuma has insisted on the nuclear programme, going so far as to appoint a minister to the energy portfolio who continues to argue that the country needs nuclear energy. But the facts are still against him, as they were against the previous four ministers who failed to deliver Zuma’s nuclear project.

The argument against nuclear energy can be broken down into five key themes.

Are seismic surveys driving penguins from their feeding grounds?

African penguins appear to move away from areas where seismic underwater surveys are happening. Lorien Pichegru

Whales, dolphins, squid and fish are among the many marine species that rely on underwater sounds for everything from foraging to communication. By listening to what’s happening in the water around them they able to orientate themselves, locate prey, avoid predators or even select a mate.

But the underwater sonic landscape is changing. It’s being affected by commercial shipping, sonar systems used by the navy, for example, or by fishing industries to locate fish schools and blasting for construction. Marine seismic surveys – which explore subterranean geological features for petroleum, natural gas and mineral deposits – are also becoming more common in response to the world’s growing energy demands.

These extremely loud man made underwater noises can harm marine animals. Seismic surveys can cause barotrauma in fish, which is the damage of tissues due to rapid changes of pressure following the loud sounds wave travelling through the water. Fish eggs that are laid in the vicinity of seismic surveys are also more likely to die off. And recent research has shown that more zooplankton dies near seismic surveys. These are the tiny animals that form the base of the marine food chain, underpinning entire oceans’ productivity. All of this means that seismic surveys can have serious consequences on marine ecosystems.

2018 Architecture ZA festival to focus on new opportunities in shaping our cities

2018 Architecture ZA festival to focus on new opportunities in shaping our citiesThis year's Architecture ZA (#AZA18) festival is calling for participatory action from those involved in the built environment on issues around how we shape our cities collectively.
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Central Line train service still suspended

No information from Metrorail about when service will resume

By Tariro Washinyira

Photo of empty station
Still no trains running on Cape Town’s Central Line. Archive photo: Tariro Washinyira

The train service on Cape Town’s Central Line has still not been restored, and Metrorail says it cannot say when the trains will run again.

The service was suspended on 8 January, when United National Transport Union (UNTU) members refused to work after the killing of a security guard. After meetings with the Passenger Rail Agency of SA at which PRASA agreed to step up security on the line, UNTU members agreed to return to work. But services were immediately suspended again following vandalism on the line, and have not been restored.

Sonja Carstens, Media and Liaison Officer at UNTU, told GroundUp the union’s members were “ready to resume their duties.”

But Riana Scott, spokesperson for Metrorail, said the trains were still not operating. She could not say when the service would resume.

“The system remains live to allow our engineers to conduct tests and should under no circumstances be tampered with,” said Scott. “The overhead current providing traction power to the trains is 50 times as potent as domestic electricity (11 000 volts vs 220 volts) and any attempt to tamper with the overhead power could result in fatal electrocution.”

Launch of the GOLD V Report on the localization of the Sustainable Development Goals and the other global agendas


On 26 and 27 January 2018, at the end of the UCLG Retreat and Campus, UCLG launched the preparation of the 5th Report of the Global Observatory on Decentralization and Local Democracy (GOLD). This is a participatory process that brings together the expertise of local and regional government associations, researchers from different geographical regions, as well as UCLG committees and partners. The meeting analyzed the challenges and ambitions in each region of the world. 

State of the affairs of the role of local and regional governments in implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs

Kontxi Odrioloza, from the Department of International Relations of the Barcelona Provincial Council, opened the session and underlined their support to the GOLD V Report in order to make the voice of local and regional governments heard and to enhance their contribution to the achievement of the SDGs, the New Urban Agenda and the other global agendas adopted by the United Nations in 2015 and 2016.

No evidence that a child is kidnapped every 30 seconds in South Africa

A picture of a young child, shoved into a box with her mouth duct-taped shut, accompanies a terrifying viral post shared on Facebook.


The post, now shared over 3,000 times, contains a list of claims in Afrikaans about how child trafficking syndicates operate in South Africa.

The first statistic shared is that “every 30 seconds a child is stolen in South Africa”, with these children then “spirited away to the sex industry”.

That is the equivalent of 2,880 children kidnapped a day or 84,000 children a month. Over a million children would be kidnapped in South Africa every year if the claim were true.

Is this warning based on solid data?

‘I don’t know how far back the text goes’

The woman who posted the warning on Facebook on 26 January 2018 told Africa Check she had received it via the messaging platform WhatsApp.

“A friend sent it to me but I think he also got it from someone who got it from someone else,” Alida Venter said. “So I don’t know how far back the text goes.”

“I put it on Facebook because I had attended a talk by people who work with human trafficking and wanted parents can take note of it.”

2016: child reported missing every 9 hours

Statistics about the rate at which children go missing in South Africa often make headlines. In 2016, TimesLIVE reported that “a child goes missing every five hours in SA”.  An Africa Check report found that the claim was incorrect.

One of the world's most famous fossil skulls, "Mrs Ples", is actually a "Mr"

A study of "Mrs" Ples' tooth sockets has made scientists think differently about "her" sex. Ditsong National Museum of Natural History

More than 70 years ago two palaeontologists named Robert Broom and John Robinson discovered a skull at the Sterkfontein Caves near Johannesburg. They nicknamed the skull, which is believed to be about 2.5 million years old, “Mrs Ples”.

Its scientific name is Australopithecus africanus, and it’s extremely significant because scientists believe it to be a distant relative of all humankind. The fossil represents part of the evidence demonstrating that Africa is the continent from which all humanity originated.

In the decades since then the skull’s sex has become the subject of some debate. Not everyone has been convinced by Broom’s insistence that “Mrs Ples” was a female of her species.

Our new research, just published in the South African Journal of Science, offers compelling proof that the naysayers were right. “Mrs” Ples was actually a “Mr”.

We discovered this by making a careful study of her tooth sockets. In many primates, males can be distinguished from females because of differences in the size of their canine teeth. Simply put, adult males have larger canines than females.

New Mungo Mill a nod to transparent textile design and production

New Mungo Mill a nod to transparent textile design and productionTextile company Mungo, founded 35 years ago by master weaver Stuart Holding, opened a new mill in November at the historic homestead of Old Nick Village in Plettenberg Bay. The Mungo Mill is the company's new thriving hub of production, comprising its design, weaving and CMT departments.
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Cape Town water crisis: crossing state and party lines isn't the answer

Mmusi Maimane is leading efforts to combat the water crisis. EPA/Mark Wessels (Pool)

Mmusi Maimane, the leader of South Africa’s main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, that governs the City of Cape Town and the Western Cape Province, now leads the task team to “defeat” Day Zero, the day on which Cape Town’s water is predicted to run out. This is currently set for April 12.

The DA’s plan to keep the taps running comes amid infighting within the Cape Town Metropolitan Council, where mayor Patricia De Lille has been stripped of responsibility for responding to the water crisis.

While many were impressed to see Maimane, Helen Zille’s provincial government and the city’s leadership presenting a united front against the water crisis, others pointed out that this was not Maimane’s show to run, saying that it crossed the “line” between the DA as a political party, and the relevant organs of state.

SACAP Vacancy - Stakeholder Relations Assistant




The South African Council for the Architectural Profession (SACAP) is a regulatory body for the Architectural Profession. SACAP’s primary role is to protect the public by maintaining a register of Architectural Professionals, within the profession through a Code of Professional Conduct, the Identification of Work (IDoW) that may be performed by registered persons and publishing Guidelines for professional fees.


Stakeholder Relations Assistant


This is a deadline driven role and would require a person who is proactive, has good organisation and administrative skills, efficient, good presentation skills, attention to detail, analytical thinker who is practical and solutions driven, good communications skills (oral and written) and team player. This position is for someone who can work independently and under pressure and with a good work ethic,


Role description


Benefits of designing and building your own shipping container home

There’s a serious trend these days with people designing and building their own shipping container modular homes.

You don’t have to to look very far to see these trendy house designs all over social media platforms like Pinterest and Facebook.

Most people think the main appeal to building them is a the ease and speed of construction as well as the low building costs along with the fact they use sustainable materials, especially if you use second hand shipping containers for the main structure of the dwelling.

containe _homes

But there are actually several other benefits that are commonly overlooked that will not only benefit the homeowner but the planet and your bank balance too.

Shipping container houses can have extra bedrooms or sections added on easily

Most people who buy their first home start off small. They buy a place usually big enough for themselves, say you and a partner and then as the family starts to grow they need to sell and find a larger home. When your home is built out of containers adding new bedroom is easy.

container home

2nd Annual Women4Climate Conference


26 February 2018. Mexico City, Mexico.

+INFO: www.c40.org/women4climate

This event brings together inspirational and influential mayors, business leaders and changemakers from around the world who are committed to creating a better, healthier planet, as well as supporting and mobilising the next generation of women leaders.

Women leaders played a critical role in negotiating the Paris Agreement and continue to drive ambitious climate action in cities, businesses and NGOs around the world. Women make up more than half the world’s population, and are often disproportionately impacted by climate change. Their leadership and participation is therefore critical in solving this global crisis.

The 2nd Annual Women4Climate Conference will be held in Mexico City on February 26th.

More information:

Zimbabwe's LGBT community: why civil rights and health issues go hand in hand

Zimbabwe's LGBT community has long struggled to gain recognition, protection and support. Reuters/Juda Ngwenya

Zimbabwe’s recently deposed president Robert Mugabe made no secret of his loathing for gay men and lesbians. He once famously described them as “worse than pigs and dogs”. In 2015, he stood before the UN General Assembly and declared “we [Zimbabweans] are not gays”.

After nearly four decades, Mugabe’s reign is over. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) groups are among those celebrating his departure.

But his ouster is unlikely to change the lives of LGBT Zimbabweans, for two main and interlinked reasons. The first is that this group of people remains marginalised and excluded from health policies, particularly around testing and treatment of HIV. The second is that Zimbabwe’s law frames LGBT people as criminals or “would-be” criminals – a constant threat to “normal” (that is, heterosexual) people’s health.

Achille Mbembe on how to restore the humanity stolen by racism


African philosopher, Achille Mbembe, has gained an enviable reputation as a scholar that challenges the tenets of modernity. Some aspects of modernity Mbembe is known to challenge are characterised by the move towards more capitalistic economies, an increase in social stratifications and the universalisation of Western European thought. From “On Private Indirect Government” (2000) to his recent book, “Critique of Black Reason” (2017), his interest has always been on how the world can account for the construction and consequences of race and racism.

In “Critique of Black Reason” Mbembe challenges us to rethink the present with the view of charting a future that, according to Mbembe, will differ from the past and the present.

A key interest of the book is on how race and racism have played a role in how the modern world is organised. However much the world might have benefited from modernity, what is unavoidable is the integral role of race and racism in the construction of modernity. This is why for Mbembe it is of utmost importance that we examine this aspect of modernity as it continues to exclude subjects and create new and old victims that are “the wretched of the earth”.

He writes:

Hypenica KZN Constuction Conference and Trade Expo, 7 - 8 February 2018, Durban Exhibition Centre

Architects and contractors prepare for new construction projects in Kwazulu-Natal

Next week Durban welcomes the 2nd annual KZN Construction Expo, providing the only multi-disciplinary show for Kwazulu-Natal’s built environment, focusing on buyer and seller engagements through free-to-attend content and face-to-face interactions under one roof.

The KZN Construction Expo is an unprecedented opportunity to access the province’s building and construction value chain ranging from small contractors through to architects, quantity surveyors, property developers, government and industry associations.  This interactive platform not only catalyses new investment into infrastructure but also builds capacity for local architects, construction professionals and small to medium sized contractors through free education and technical skills development during training workshops. 

A new initiative in 2018, that provides continuing professional development for architectural professionals from the South African Institute for Building Design (SAIBD) and is hosted as part of the KZN Construction Expo, is the Architectural Essentials Corner. 

XII Cumbre Hemisférica de Alcaldes y Gobiernos Locales


29 - 31 de agosto. Punta del Este, Uruguay.

En esta cumbre, que abordará problemáticas comunes a los participantes como el medio ambiente, el combate a la pobreza y el desarrollo servicios para la ciudadanía, participarán cerca de 40 autoridades locales representantes del mundo municipal de Chile, Bolivia, Perú, Brasil, Uruguay, México, Paraguay, Ecuador, República Dominicana, Costa Rica, y como invitados especiales Estados Unidos y España.

Las actividades previstas se desarrollarán en el Centro de Convenciones de Punta del Este, Uruguay.

Más información:

Wednesday, 29 August, 2018 to Friday, 31 August, 2018

Nelson Mandela Metro calls for investment in innovative solar power project

Image source:
Image source: [[www.pixabay.com]]</span>The Nelson Mandela Bay municipality is planning to embark on an electricity generation project that will see selected consumers across the metro equipped with solar panels - at no cost to either party.
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UCLG ASPAC Executive Bureau Meeting 2018


3-6 April, 2018. Islamabad, Pakistan.

+ INFO: www.uclg-aspac.org

The First Session of UCLG ASPAC Executive Bureau 2018 will be held in Islamabad (Pakistan) from the 3rd to the 6th of April 2018.


More information:

Tuesday, 3 April, 2018 to Friday, 6 April, 2018

How virtual 3D modelling and simulation can help us create better cities

A 3D model of a development scenario in Brisbane’s West End produced using ESRI’s CityEngine program. Author supplied
A 3D model of a development scenario in Brisbane’s West End produced using ESRI’s CityEngine program. Author supplied</span>New technologies offer new possibilities for planning and designing cities. 3D urban modelling and simulation can give a real sense of the outcomes of planning decisions. However, incorporating these technologies into planning practice has its challenges.
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Basil Read plans steeply discounted rights offer

Basil Read plans steeply discounted rights offer
© hxdyl – [[www.123rf.com 123RF.com]]</span>Construction group Basil Read proposes to raise R300m via a steeply discounted rights offer which will see its shares in issue increase 11 times.
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Rubela Park by Architects Of Justice

On a challenging site, Architects Of Justice (AOJ) have created a geometrically striking industrial-chic office building which employs forthright sustainable design methodology and technology.

“In mid-2015 we were commissioned to design a new office building for Caldas Engineering, a supplier of crusher parts to the mining industry,” says principal architect, Mike Rassmann. As Caldas had expanded steadily over the years, their current premises in Meadowdale had become cramped and didn’t possess good views into the yard and over their stock, something which was imperative for a company which relies on the fact that they can dispatch stock quickly.

Caldas required more yard space (for stock storage) and more office space (to accommodate their increasing staff complement). The company acquired a 4300m² rectangular property in Activia Park, Germiston, which met their requirements for more yard space but unfortunately did not have any quality office space on it.

What is the Connection Between Architecture, Technology and Education?

It is quite fair to say that education affects every aspect of our life, as it shapes the way we percept the world around us. Moreover, education is what brings up specialists, who are responsible for all the important decisions, which define the life of a country and the world in general. On the other hand, the number of things, which can shape the way the education is provided, is limited, yet architecture and technology are among those things.


Obviously, technology has changed the educational process and will change it even more in the nearest future. Although most of the changes are taken for granted, they have made the process of acquiring new knowledge and skills much easier and, at times, faster. The first thing which comes to mind when you think about the technological development in the context of education is the internet and all the lovely advantages which it has provided. The internet has granted an opportunity for everyone to search and share information, hence saving any scholar tens and hundreds of hours, which one would otherwise have to spend in libraries.