The University of Pretoria and the Pretoria Institute for Architecture will be hosting African Perspectives 2009.
As part of the conference where cities from all of Africa will be viewed, studied and debated, there is opportunity to workshop Tshwane as a particular case study. The challenges that Pretoria CBD faces within the development of Tshwane Municipal Area are to a certain extend comparable to many African city centres:
What is the future role of the old ‘Central Business District’ or layers of the historic city centre? – will it remain as the heart of the Tshwane metropolis, will it be one of many nodes, or will it dissapate?
What are the processes and transactions that sustain the city centre?
What is the quality of the architecture and spaces of the city centre in terms of its relevance for production, business, movement, work, living, recreation, performance, art and ritual?
What must be done to revitalize the city centre to realize a responsive, appropriate and attractive residential environment for citizens from all income groups;
Can the more dense and heterogeneous mix of functions that have entered the city centre after Apartheid be retained and strengthened?;
How can clean and adequate public transport to, and within, the centre be realized?;
How should the city upgrade unsafe public space where no one takes responsibility for management, into safe, attractive and well managed, shared public domains?;
What is required to preserve the rich built heritage - in particular modernist stock - within an environment of frenetic economic development or an environment of low or no development?
Is it possible to reduce pollution and the use of coal-based electricity, heavy infrastructure and water, so as to turn the City Centre into a sustainable organism?
Besides, like other cities, Tshwane/Pretoria has its unique characteristics. Preservation and enhancement of the uniqueness of a city though, is again a shared challenge:
Responsiveness to the specific bio-physical setting and particularities of Pretoria;
Settlement of the region before the city’s creation, Pretoria’s creation and early history;
the Apartheid episode and its aftermath;
a new spatial development strategy and ISDF for the metropole – a multi-nodal approach
a new spatial development strategy for the Inner City - Pretoria redefined as cultural capital and National Capital;
the advent of the Gautrain;
the twin city development - Pretoria and Johannesburg and beyond.
As was the case at African Perspectives 2007, the floor will be opened for satellite locations: Dar es Salaam, Casablanca, Accra, Amsterdam,...