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memory and weathering: regenerating kalk bay harbour

For the millennia before the industrial revolution, humans experienced time through diurnal cycles, where the rotation of the earth around the sun over a 24-hour period governed our actions and behaviours. With the industrial revolution, mass production and the introduction of trains, the meaning of time has since changed irrevocably. Driven through speed, commodification and standardisation, time has become linear, our lives have been governed through hours, minutes and seconds.

In the modern era, the transition from cyclic to linear time has had an adverse effect on architectural production. Buildings, especially those in cities, have become commodities, based on an exchange between time and capital. As architecture is driven through capitalism, buildings are seen as objects that must resist the inevitably of weathering and time.

Time is the measure for any biological, physical ,social or environmental change. Architecture, much like anything living or static, exists temporarily. Buildings are subjected to the influence of the elements, all of which will eventually dissipate through time and weathering.

The context of this project is set in Kalk Bay harbour, where the local fisher-people have been marginalised through colonialization, inequitable fishing policies and gentrification. This community depends on the weather for their livelihoods, as fishing activity can only occur in certain conditions. This dissertation aims to investigate ways in which leveraging the cycles of the weather in architectural design can aid in providing economic and social opportunities for the this community.

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gregory alexander

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