This dissertation is an effort to understand the processes and systems housed within the
infrastructure of a dynamic urban environment. Jeppestown, or Jeppe, as it is known by its inhabitants, is a post-industrial wasteland on the eastern outskirts of Johannesburg CBD (central business district). This rich cultural landscape was formed over generations by optimistic prospectors intrigued by the illusion of riches posed by the City of Gold.
The project is focused on linking and transforming voids within the urban fabric, which are threatened by gentrification, into a healthy and productive network of public space. Guided by mapping and observation techniques, the designer can formulate the conception for a landscape architectural intervention aimed at maintaining and amplifying certain aspects coinciding with the ritualistic activities of everyday life as established within Jeppestown. Anchored by a series of social and economic nodes, a spinal development emerges, addressing thresholds between public and private realms by investigating edges as vessels for environmental and social systems. The designer uses a combination of existing characteristics of this urban artefact and newly introduced sustainable design principles to carve a coherent and productive public environment from an amalgamated entity termed the landscape slate.
Dissertation (ML(Prof))--University of Pretoria, 2015.