There has been an enthusiastic response from architectural students wanting to enter the competition for the conversion of the Citiq grand silos in Newtown, Johannesburg into student accommodation.
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Submissions, which include an application form and a poster of their concepts close on 24 January, but anyone wanting to participate there is still an opportunity to visit the site at 66 Carr Street, Newtown on Friday, 17 January at 11am. The overall winner will be awarded R35,000 and second and third places will receive R17,500 and R7,500, respectively.
"However, it is possible that the final submissions could incorporate the best design elements from all the competition entries, and not just the winners," says CEO of Citiq, Paul Lapham. "The idea is to give architectural students an opportunity to design a space that they see as not only redefining student life, but also student lifestyle."Work will start soon
With the success of the recently completed student apartments in the Mill Junction (the smaller of the two silos), Citiq is gearing up to start the next phase. Work is due to start on the grand silos in June 2014 subject to planning approval. At present they are unused, but the structure is serving as a massive advertising billboard on the rooftop which is clearly visible from the highway.
"Newtown is an ideal place in which students can live because of its proximity to both Wits and the University of Johannesburg and other colleges in the vicinity. Involving students in the design was intended to allow them to express their ideas as how a potential conversion could look and function and appeal to other students," he says.Ideal for conversions
Land in the city centres remains in short supply and it makes sense to identify abandoned buildings that are no longer suited to their original purpose. This provides for ideal conversions or repurposing of these buildings into structures that are more suited to their location and the community. The redevelopments are cost effective, conveniently situated and add to the aesthetic appeal of the city.
The announcement of winning and notable entries is scheduled to take place at the Ithuba Arts Gallery at 100 Juta Street, Braamfontein in Johannesburg between 17 and 22 February 2014 and members of the public are welcome to attend where the exhibits will be displayed.