Within the time allowed for this presentation I can hardly address a balanced range of issues dealing with the
‘Future Life of the African City Centre’. I will introduce four topics that have been close to my heart that have
bearing on the theme of the conference. My ideas about the city are influenced by the fact that I am an architect
and academic working in Cape Town. As a practitioner I try to cultivate an eye for opportunity rather than a
tongue paralysing critique. I hope that the issues raised will also have relevance for people from elsewhere and
of different professional backgrounds.
I will draw no distinction between the city centre and any other parts of the city, since the problems and
opportunities about which I will speak, have the same effect right across the city.