The Maboneng Precinct is one of the largest urban regeneration project in the southern hemisphere, created by visionary property developer Jonathan Liebmann, and designed by Daffonchio and Associates Architects. Maboneng is an open, mixed-use neighbourhood located on the eastern side of the Johannesburg CBD.
The developer's focus is to transform entire neighbourhoods by designing and developing iconic properties and employing innovative strategies that create integrated and uplifted urban environments.
Maboneng is an urban proposal resulting from both global inspiration and local innovation. For example, the retail spaces are dedicated to small unique concepts, franchise chains are not considered and artisans are included in the projects supply chain and encouraged to start small business ventures.
The architecture re-establishes the dialogue between buildings and the streetscape, creating opportunities for engagement between the private and public realm. This is particularly meaningful in the post-apartheid context and anti-urban legacy of Johannesburg.
Maboneng, a Sotho word meaning “place of light”, is a fitting name for a district that has fast become a centre of creative energy for Johannesburg’s urban artists. With a mix of art galleries, and retail and studio space on offer, the precinct draws the inner-city public, as well as the chic, art-going crowd of the city’s northern suburbs, bringing life back into downtown Johannesburg.
World Architecture Festival xxxx, 20xx
The site is located on the south bank of the Thames River and close to the Tower Bridge. It is well connected to public transportation, and has great views of the Shard, Swiss Re and landscape Railroad Southwark. This area has undergone many changes in the last 20 years; what was previously a depressed area has become the a site of development of new cultural industries. Norman Foster developed a master plan which includes the construction of offices, luxury hotels, restaurants, gyms and the city council. The location of London Public Library emerged as a natural complement to Foster´s master plan.
The brief called for the library to be inserted as a continuity to the master plan. There was no restriction set for the height of the building, but proposals had to retain 100% of the green footprint of the site, thereby ensuring generous outdoor public space.
Anglo American Headquarters Competition, Johannesburg CBD
Anglo American held a competition for urban regeneration and a new building in the Anglo Precinct in the Johannesburg CBD. Daffonchio entered the competition in collaboration with Denver Hendricks and Phillippa Tumubweine.
The brief was to restore the original Art Deco Head Office at 44 Main Street, refurbish several high rise buildings built in the 70's and 80's, to reinvigorate the outdoor public spaces in the precinct, and to design a new 30 storey high rise building.
We proposed futuristic sky-walks to connect the various buildings, and introduced extensive landscaping for the streets and public spaces.
Stimela Square, Johannesburg CBD
This was a proposal done for Standard Bank, who owned the site at the time, in an attempt to prevent the demolition of the historical Ussher industrial buildings in between Standard Bank and the M3 in the Johannesburg CBD. Our plan envisaged the preservation and re-purposing of 1,700 square meters of historical industrial buildings and 33,000 square meters of new high density residential.
_Victoria Yards, Lorentzville, Johannesburg
Victoria Yards is 30,000 square meters of previously industrial space across the road from the Nando's global headquarters in Lorentzville, a historic area to the east of the Johannesburg CBD.
The buildings and adjacent spaces are being re-purposed into studios, community food gardens and artisan's workshops. There are also plans for indoor climbing walls, dance studios and community centres.
The development aims to empower the surrounding community through the skills development of artisans, and ensuring that the facilities are accessible and inclusive.
The developer is Brian Green of 44 Stanley Avenue fame. Nando's, with its long history of developing and nurturing South African artists, has been very involved in this development.
Victoria Yards is scheduled to open at the end of 2017.