Home > Architecture, Design, Life, Photography > So I had to jump some fences but…

So I had to jump some fences but…

…I went to have a look around the Umhlanga Ridge New Town Centre development, and took some photos. Unfortunately my camera’s battery ran dry, and I had to take the rest the pics with my crappy little camera phone, but you get the idea..

Mansardy

Developement

Park view

Its really exciting to see how much thought has been put into this development, that’s been slowly taking shape over the last few years. The project is facilitated under a broad set of aesthetic guidelines, which creates a cohesive and elegant urban landscape. You can read about the Architectural and Corporate Identity guide lines in the freely available release notes from Moreland Developers.

Interesting light fixture

Cranes cranes cranes

“Worldwide the trend is to discovering a
new urbanism—an emphasis on exquisitely
designed, safe, convenient and extremely
well-managed cities that nurture human
culture and dignity while being powerful
economic generators and job creators.
Umhlanga Ridge New Town Centre is enthused
with this vision and focuses, on one
hand, on a public environment of quality
and distinction while exhorting private developers
to surpass these high ideals with
their individual contributions to the whole.”

The Umhlanga Ridge New Town Centre Vision

Bridge

Theatre?

More mansard roofs

I especially like how pedestrian orientated the town planning is..

Pedestrian

And as always, the indigenous planting is a huge improvement on the previously popular and totally out of context palm trees.

Indigenous 1

Planting box

Indigenous 2

Similarly, large existing trees have been preserved.

Tree

All in all, very exciting stuff..

Park view 2

BTW. Would’ve been super amped on that zigzag ramp/stair set up if I hadn’t seen it somewhere else before.. Tried to find it in my Stumble favorites but I couldn’t. Still pretty rad though.

Like this post? Why not submit it..

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  1. July 27, 2009 at 5:31 pm

    Glad you jumped those fences to get the pics–nice work.

    • July 27, 2009 at 6:08 pm

      Thank you.
      Yeah it was definitely worth it.

  2. July 28, 2009 at 11:20 am

    Rad photos dude, it’s looking sick hey?

    • July 28, 2009 at 1:38 pm

      Yeah dude..

      It looks amazing.
      You should look at those two PDFs, they’re super interesting.

      • silentbee
        August 1, 2009 at 2:21 pm

        I’m familiar with the design guidlines imposed ny Morelands. I’ve worked in the area, and sat in on their design committee meetings. And I’m flabbergasted at how the Lincoln on the Lake building was passed. i guess when you have the might of the developers who’re responsible for this building, you can pull the right strings…

      • August 1, 2009 at 5:04 pm

        Yeah I read your post. And I agree with you on some of the points. Certainly on the solar control! I should’ve picked that up straight away! Seriously. This building’s going to be unbearable in summer!! You’ll probably find that within a year of being occupied they’ll have to hire someone to design some sort of screening/shading element. So yes, in that regard the building is badly designed.

        But somehow I quite like the European look of the building. Its an interesting mix of styles and materials, and I think once the area has been built up a bit with blocks in kind of style that we’re used to seeing in the area the Lincoln building won’t stick out quite as much, and could look quite nice.

        It’s very early though. I suppose we’ll just have to wait and see.

  3. August 1, 2009 at 12:53 pm

    ZigZag ramps are old hat! Sure, the landscaping is nice, but how much do you need?

    I take it you are being sacastic with your caption about pedestrians? on pavements? with a big fence? and a sign saying ‘pedestrians’ Or, are pedestrians those funny things that come out of cars when they stop? Maybe its early days, but I can’t see no bustle and carrying stuff about and all the stuff that makes cities interesting.

    Do we really want to live in a sterilized, ‘mock europe’? A couple of indigenous trees don’t make it a sustainable part of the urban landscape.

    But you have done us a service ‘jumping over the fence’. Nice pics – keep at it!

    • August 1, 2009 at 1:30 pm

      Thanks for your input.

      I know I have a lot to learn, but I think its looking quite attractive. Maybe its a little euro-centric, but do we really need another Ushaka? Is that African architecture?
      If it had gum-poles and thatch instead of mansard roofs would that be any better?

      I get what you’re saying about the ‘pedestrian’ thing though, and sure its not ideal, but right now the fences are just a reality of the country we live in. I really think it could improve though, and the way its headed, with a lot of residential developments planned in between the other buildings, it could make for a very interesting urban environment.

      I just thought it was pretty interesting. A step in the right general direction if you will. I’m keen to see how it all pans out in the next few years.

      • silentbee
        August 1, 2009 at 2:16 pm

        I’ve blogged about this scheme, too. Well, the Lincoln on the Lake building featured in your first pic. See: http://yourarchitectureisbad.wordpress.com

        While, I agree that a lot of the urban planning in Umhlanga is sound — I think it will take few years to become organic and dirty and gritty and interesting — but it’s heart is in the right place. I do think, however, that it’s very sad that we now have this very European building that pretends to acknowledge our local, subtropical climate in the middle of what could be a very important and special public space 😦

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