De­sign brings Dur­ban to life

CityPress - - News - PADDY HARPER paddy.harper@city­press.co.za

Dur­ban’s streets came to life with colour, minia­ture gar­dens, mu­rals and rusted scrap cars this week thanks to the 25th World Congress of the In­ter­na­tional Union of Ar­chi­tects.

The 5 000 ar­chi­tects and ac­tivists at the congress took their work to some of the city’s busiest com­muter routes – and the re­sults have left res­i­dents agog.

Elec­tric­ity boxes have be­come free­stand­ing mu­rals and the main pil­lars sup­port­ing the fly­over above the War­wick Av­enue mar­ket are heav­ing with stun­ning wall art.

War­wick Av­enue, which runs from Berea to the Greyville Race­course, has nine sep­a­rate mar­kets along its length.

This stretch car­ries an es­ti­mated 460 000 com­muters each day on their jour­ney be­tween Dur­ban’s town­ships and work or school.

An in­stal­la­tion called Rush Hour on Carter Av­enue be­hind the N3, and the busy King Din­uzulu (Berea) Road par­al­lel to it, fea­tures old scrap cars that have con­verted to shel­ters for pass­ing com­muters.

Fur­ther along, there’s a Women’s Walk – a wooden fence stud­ded with mir­rors and pho­to­graphs of the thou­sands of women who pass by ev­ery day.

The city’s main street, Pix­ley KaSeme (West St), has re­ceived a 400m face-lift that has greened and re­pur­posed the road­side to cre­ate a more pleas­ant space for peo­ple liv­ing in the in­ner-city blocks of flats.

Else­where, there are minia­ture gar­dens, re­flec­tion ar­eas where peo­ple can sit and re­lax, and pub­lic gallery ex­hi­bi­tions.

The congress is over and the ar­chi­tects have gone, but most of the in­stal­la­tions will re­main.

PHOTO: KHAYA NG­WENYA

NEW HOPE A woman re­laxes in front of a mo­saic of US Pres­i­dent Barack Obama. The mo­saic is just one of the new in­stal­la­tions that bright­ened up Dur­ban dur­ing the World Congress of the In­ter­na­tional Union of Ar­chi­tects

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