"Pretoria's civic architecture bears the stamp of Sytze Wierda, the architect who interpreted President Paul Kruger's vision of the new Republic. This had domestic and international aspects. The former pertained to the establishment of Pretoria as the capital city (in competition with many contenders), the establishment of centralized authority and a civil service. Wierda transformed the nachtmaaldorp by building in the appropriate scale and style. In foreign relations there was the desire for a free harbour, access to the seas and direct contact with the Netherlands, Germany, France, Portugal, Russia and England. This was illustrated by the rail connection to Delagoa Bay. Wierda was directly involved in both aspects as architect and engineer, as illustrated by his bridges and his swan song design at the International Exhibition of 1900 in Paris.
However, history took a different turn. The country has been taught yet another frame of reference. Wierda's vision remained an unfinished dream. Perhaps this explains why Pretoria feels somewhat incongruous, even to her inhabitants."