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anika hanekom

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the suburban city: exploring the psycho-spatial qualities of sprawling suburbia to enhance city liveability through a compact-city housing model

The aim of this project is to analyse suburban characteristics - built, unbuilt and emotional forms - to inform an "inside-out" architectural solution for inner city housing and overall planning of a dense and more humane urban environment. As suburbia is known for its "pleasant liveablity", I have chosen to learn from these qualities to design a compact city that can in time redress urban sprawl towards a more humane environment.

Focusing on timber construction as a sustainable building method, linked to the timber plantation history of the area in which the project is based: York Street, George, Garden Route, Western Cape. As natural forests and plantations are big tourist attractions, job creators and the main presence that gives the Garden Route its majestic natural qualities, my project aims to protect the surrounding natural environment from a sprawling city typology in the future as seen worldwide – with my most familiar example of this being Cape Town.

My biggest challenge for this project has been to find a balance between 4 individually complex entities within the same environment: the automobile, street, people, and appropriate architecture.

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