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Media24 announces curators' panel for Design24

Further to its design competition to remodel the Naspers Centre on Cape Town's foreshore, Media24 has announced the names of the curators' panel that will select the winner of Design24.
Design24 is an official project on the World Design Capital 2014 programme and is open to everyone in South Africa, whether a design professional or not. The competition closes at midnight on Friday 28 February 2014.


The curators' role will be to assess every entry against a list of weighted criteria including aesthetic qualities, sustainability, cost and construction viability. The curators will make recommendations to a second panel of judges from the senior leadership of both Media24 and Naspers, the media company's holding company. A main winner will be awarded R200,000 and two runners-up will receive R80,000 and R40,000 respectively.
    • Paul Duncan is a former editorial director at Conde Nast Independent Magazines and former editor of Conde Nast House & Garden (South Africa). Currently an independent media consultant, Paul was previously head of design for homeware at Woolworths in South Africa and was the curator convenor for the World Design Capital 2014.

    He has written many books on design and interiors and was responsible for the abridgement and picture research for Nelson Mandela's Illustrated Long Walk to Freedom. He lives in Cape Town.

    • Luyanda Mpahlwa is an award-winning architect/urban designer and principal of Cape Town based firm Design Space Africa. His scheme for the 10×10 Low Cost housing project in Mitchells Plain was internationally recognised for its contribution towards improving people's lives.

    Luyanda is a thought leader in urban issues, contributing to and participating in several urban forums and initiatives and mentoring younger designers. He was involved with the WDC program from the bid stages and was part of the winning Cape Town delegation to Taipei. Luyanda was also on the World Design Capital curatorial panel.

    • Rashiq Fataar is the founder of Our Future Cities, a non-profit organisation that inspires dialogue about the urban development of Cape Town and other cities. He is also the CEO of urbanism think tank Future Cape Town.

    As an independent consultant, speaker and writer, Rashiq works at the intersection of urbanism, new media and economics. He holds an Actuarial Science degree from the University of Cape Town and currently serves on the Board of Cape Town Tourism.

    • Simon Gill, as a building services engineer, leads the integrated buildings team in Cape Town for multidisciplinary consultancy Arup. His work in Cape Town, Mauritius, Belgrade, Belfast, Moscow, Amsterdam and the UK gives him a global understanding of integrated design, incorporating mechanical, electrical, structural and façade engineering disciplines, among others.

    He has led teams on award-winning projects including the six star Greenstar Silo 1 office and Silo 2 residential buildings at the V&A Waterfront.

    • Sean Cowgill is a quantity surveyor and director of De Leeuw Group Cape Town. He has specialist knowledge in building and property economics, building contracts, post contract administration, and cost control.

    As quantity surveyor and property economist, he has provided expert advice and insight on numerous commercial, residential, retail, hotel and infrastructure construction projects in South Africa, Africa and the UK.

Changing Cape Town's landscape

When Sanlam built it in 1962, the Naspers Centre was the tallest commercial building in Africa and the tallest in Cape Town. Nicky Swartz, programme director for World Design Capital 2014, said, "The outcome of the Design24 challenge could literally change the landscape of our city, especially as it sits within the wider context of a redesigned Foreshore precinct. I hope the submitted designs cause consternation, raise questions, spark debate and conversation and engage all of Cape Town, providing a platform for discussion about urban design and development. Through Design24 and other projects, the envisaged changes to our urban landscape will represent the substance of the legacy of our year as the world's design capital."

Despite the changing cityscape, Cape Town's central business district has not always been on an upward trajectory. Decades of decline meant that ongoing development in areas such as the Foreshore is relatively new: the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) was built in 2003. However, future developments are set to change the area completely. These include the expansion of the CTICC, the construction of the new Christiaan Barnard Memorial Hospital and the redevelopment of the Artscape precinct project.

Design24 comes with an implementation budget of R15 million, which will be used to realise the winning design as the Naspers Centre joins its neighbours in changing the face of the city through sustainable design.

For more information, go to, or follow @design24ct on Twitter, with hashtag #WDC317.
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