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compiled by Karan Bawa, Willian Dewar, Nicolette Garrett and Daniel Kallenbach


CONTENTS introduction


robbrecht en daem


flemish procurment systems and architecture


south african procurement systems and architecture


designing south africa


case studies in procuring architecture




department of public works


closing panal discussion and key notes


robbrecht en daam exhibition


Paul Robbrecht

Stefan Devoldere

Inba Thumbiran

Zahira Asmal

Nkosinathi Manzana

Diane Arvanitakis

Linda Mampura

introduction hannah le ROUX

In South Africa, the role of architecture as an area of

on the 24th of March 2011, had an audience of

of make up 50% of the profession in Belgium, a

public culture is topical, and the debate lively. Recent

architects and urban designers in private and public

profession which is now very much based on inter-

key events include the showcasing and debates around

employment, government officials and key members

office and inter-disciplinary collaborations.

the 2010 stadia, the AZA2010 conference held in

of the public from government agencies. It explored

good governance that uses multiple strategies to

Johannesburg, the work of SHiFT and practitioners

how the South African and Flemish procurement

ensure quality architecture and urban design:

on social housing, the publication of Jonathan

systems for public architecture and urban design

thorough spatial frameworks for urban development

Noble’s book on Post-apartheid public architecture,

compare, with the intention of supporting a stronger

and new projects; a coherent procurement system

and the forthcoming hosting of the International

culture of architecture.

for public work; dialogue between the profession and

Union of Architects’ conference in 2012. In contrast

government; the patronage of young talent, and

to the fair amount work done by professionals to

The workshop expanded on the exhibition,

reward for “masters”; competitions; publications and

promote the role of this field in enhancing public

“Robbrecht en Daem: Pacing Through


life, there has been little change in policy around

Architecture”, curated by Iwan Strauven and Stefan

the procurement of public buildings from the side

Devoldere of A+ and Bozar, which travelled to South

The Robbrecht en Daem exhibition illustrated a

of government organisations. However, with the

Africa in March 2011 from the Whitechapel Gallery

different approach to procuring buildings to the fast-

establishment of a Ministry of Human Settlements,

in London. Pacing through Architecture reflects the

track model used to build the World Cup stadia and

as well as the inclusion of architecture in the domain

work of Paul Robbrecht and Hilde Daem, whose

infrastructure. It suggested a slower, deeper way of

of the department of Arts and Culture, there are now

mature practice has developed a patient, crafted and

working that involves careful design, more concern

opportunities for a dialogue about change.

anti-monumental approach to architecture which

for local technologies, and respect for what South

has earned the respect and patronage of the Flemish

African, as opposed to global values might be. The

“Procuring Architecture” kick started this debate on

community. The work is presented in a darkened

work is not provocative in a negative sense. It invited

the procurement of architecture and urban design in

space, through a range of drawn and photographed

a warm, appreciative response, and respect for the

South Africa. It was conceived of as a follow up to the

images, and through a series of remarkable films of

thinking behind it. It exemplified how architecture

polemics of the AZA2010 conference, and as a way of

the projects by Brussels photographer and film-

can be used in ways that are politically accountable,

linking the exhibition “Pacing through Architecture”

maker Maarten Vanden Abeele.

culturally embedded and socially and environmentally

to broader publics. The aim of the workshop was


to explore comparisms between South African and

The work of Robbrecht en Daem is relevant to South

Flemish procurement systems for public architecture

Africa as it reflects a design culture to inspire debate

March 24th kicked off with a welcome by the

and urban design, with the intention of supporting a

about good design, especially in the wake of the

Professor Yunus Ballim, the Deputy Vice Chancellor

stronger culture of architecture.

2010 FIFA World Cup. It reflects a close working

(Academic) of the University of the Witwatersrand.

relationship between local government and architects

The opening presentation was by Paul Robbrecht of

The workshop, held at the Professional Development

through the agency of the Bouwmeester. Such

his practice’s work. In a minimalist visual style, it was

Hub of the University of the Witwatersrand

relationships are built up carefully in the context

brought to life with an open, anecdotal

was developed. The slow but steady growth of the

Mampuru of the Department of Public Works

practice’s work in scale attests to the supportive

outlined the routes to obtaining architects for national

environment as well as their intense involvement


in each project. The nature of this patronage was spelled out in the subsequent presentation by Stefan

The workshop closed with a panel discussion involving

Devoldere, the Adjunct Bouwmeester of Flanders.

Stefan Devoldere and the South African speakers.

Entitled BWMSTR, it expanded on the suggestion of

Comments from the floor expressed frustrations with

a supportive structure for architecture.

many systems in place, and in particular the requests for discounted fees that are felt to have a negative

In the following session, South African counterparts

impact on design quality. The MC, Zola Kgaka from

reflected on the system in place in their local context.

South African Institute of Architects, promised to

Inba Thumbiran from the Construction Industry

continue the debate and to seek to have more input

Development Board outlined key policies. Remarking

from professional advisors into project briefing, as in

on the effectiveness of the Flemish system in creating

the Bouwmeester system.

fairness and uniformity in procurement, and called on the Department of Public Works to learn from this

The Flemish Government supported the mounting

model. Zahira Asmal followed with a discussion of her

of “Pacing Through Architecture” and the visit of

advocacy work through Design South Africa for the

Paul Robbrecht, and contributed to the workshop

promotion of South African creativity through public

expenses. Further financial support came from the

commissions such as the 2010 World Cup.

Council for the Built Environment, The Johannesburg Development Agency and the Cement and Concrete

After lunch, a series of sessions described diverse

Institute. The exhibition was locally curated by

systems in place to procure architecture. Nkosinathi

Hannah le Roux from the School of Architecture and

Manzana from the Johannesburg Development

Planning at the University of the Witwatersrand, and

Agency (JDA) spoke about the routes they have

the workshop was organised together with the South

used to procure Johannesburg’s public architecture,

African Institute for Architecture.

including public competitions. Diane Arvanitakis from SHiFT followed with a discussion of housing types and their procurement, and Caroline Sohie from ARUP discussed other international systems,


notably the UK’s CABE system. To close, Linda


description of the situations for which each building

robbrecht en daem


make up 50% of the profession in Belgium, a

could be best contextualised by looking at the

after elections on 13 June 2010, there is still a lack of

profession which is now very much based on inter-

innovative types of architecture that have come out

a political will to form a united Belgian government.

office and inter-disciplinary collaborations.

of this small European country. Keynote speaker,

The separatism has had a detrimental effect on the

Perhaps the most exciting change is the new interest

Paul Robbrecht of Robbrecht and Daem architecten

ability of Robbecht and Daem’s ability to maintain

in public spaces and public buildings, an interest that

is an esteemed Flemish architect, who, along with his

close working relationships with professionals in

was sparked in the general public and professions

wife Hilde Daem, established an architectural practice

Walloon, the French-speaking part of the country

alike by the formation of the Bouwmeester system.

in the Flemish city of Ghent in 1975. Over their

who had much in common with Flanders when

36-year-long career, Robbrect and Daem architecten

Robbrecht started his career.

have produced architecture addressing a number of

Robbrecht then related the dramatic ways in which

typologies from urban amenities and public spaces, to

the field of architecture has changed in Flanders

interventions in the landscape.

within the last 30 years.

Introduced by Hannah Le Roux, architect and

“An architect in Flanders, in the early 80’s was a

lecturer at the University of the Witwatersrand and

really individualistic person; he was something like

for whom Paul Robbrect is acting as a co-supervisor

the doctor of a village or the policeman of a village or

for a doctoral thesis, he was described as an architect

the lawyer of the village”

with an incredible sensitivity to the everyday and to

At that time, one would become an architect by

how things work overtime, making his architecture

building private houses, usually for friends and family.

accessible to people from a different cultural

The situation that allowed this was the politically


promoted idea that every family should be able to

Paul Robbrecht opened his talk on a selection of

build their own house, a trend that started in the

works by his practice, by making much of the great

1960s, and which Robbrecht feels did much to destroy

contrasts between Belgium and South Africa on this,

the Belgian landscape. As a result, when looking into

his first in Africa – he was quick to point out that

the history of Flemish architecture, one would be

he had been to Morocco, but did not count that as

struck by the amount of private houses which have


come out of this period. This too has changed to a

“I’ve seen South Africa breaking free from Apartheid;

situation where higher-density housing is being built.

we are a small country and we are going into

There were also very few women involved in


architecture and the related professions;

The kind of “Apartheid” that has arisen in Belgium

Robbrecht explains: “when I started, there was only

has come about because of political, social and

one woman in my class at the architectural school and

cultural divisions along the lines of the Flemish and

I married that woman (Hilde Daem)”. Women now

10 paul robbrecht

French speaking people in Belgium. The result is that

robbrecht en daem

The Bouwmeetser system of procurement in Belgium

Paul Robbrecht presented this selection of

Bruges in the 20th Century, it penetrated right into

work which has come out of his office:

the heart of this radial, fortified mediaeval city. The train station was built right in the middle of a city

Concertgebouw (Concert Hall), Bruges,

square which was once the site of a mediaeval cattle


market, when the late the train station was moved, it

Completed in 2002, the Concert Hall in Bruges, West

left a gap in urban fabric; a place that was destroyed

Flanders, is perhaps the most important commission

by bringing the train to Bruges. It was in this very

received by Robbrect and Daem. Its completion

gap that the Concert Hall was to be built.

coincided with Bruges being named the European

In 1999, Robbrecht and Daem entered a two stage

cultural capital and the Concert Hall was used as the

international completion for the design of the

main venue for the huge accompanying festival.

Concert Hall and were amongst ten architectural

The canal-based city of Bruges, at its height in

offices that were chosen to take part in the second

the 15th century is protected in its entirety as a

stage. While the Concert Hall was being designed,

UNESCO World Heritage Site. Often referred to as

Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony became an

‘the Venice of the North’, Bruges was once home to

inspiration. The idea is that the Concert Hall would

one of the Medici family’s banks and most notably

act as a kind of floating, transitional building,

to painter Jan van Eyck of the Flemish Primitives

bringing the countryside that surrounds Bruges into

School. It is now also home to Robbrect and Daem’s

the heart of the city, much like the coming of the

Concert Hall, designed, we were told, in the spirit of

train had.

van Eyck.

Central to the concept of the Concert Hall, are the

Bruges has had a long standing tradition of music

two ways in which the public may meet to experience

festivals that stretch back to the modal music of the

a concert and so there are two performance venues;

Middle Ages, before the development of polyphonic

the chamber music room and the main concert hall,

music in the west, which is the basis of classical

both of which are marked by two towers which

music as we know it today. The development of the

dominate the exterior form of the building. The

concert hall came out of the need for a music venue

exterior of this concrete building in clad in red

which could form a modern link to music of the

ceramic tiles which echo the tiled rooftops of the

Middle Ages that would stand in the historical centre

mediaeval city. A foyer on different levels connects

of Bruges where there are no other contemporary

the two performance venues. Inside the concrete is


left unadorned; the three parallel structural walls

Robbrect and Daem’s Concert Hall has a very

that support the balconies are exposed to the public

particular context in the city: when the train came to

before they filter in to the performance venue.

The mediaeval city centre of Bruges - Concert Hall footprint is shown in black

than richness of materials, and so only “poor materials”, i.e., concrete, plywood and solid timber have been used. There is room for 350 concertgoers to take their seats in the gallery spaces which surround the chamber music room in a spiral, with additional seats on the ground floor. The effect is one of intimate interplay as the audience surround the musical action, much like that of the Elizabethan theatre. The concept for the main concert hall comes from the ideas of the two hands placed either side of the mouth in an effort to project the voice. This concept can be seen in the two reclining walls of the concert hall. Robbrecht described the wonderful acoustics of this performance venue as being the direct result of what he calls his “rather naive” concept and a fruitful working relationship with Arup of Winchester, UK. The Concert Hall was designed to keep the audience as close to the performers as possible; they are never more than 30 metres apart which is especially important for reading facial expressions during a performance. It is this unconventional design which Robbrecht describes as a strange mix between an opera house and a concert hall.

The interior of the main Concert Hall

The chamber music room

paul robbrecht

proportioning system to create its ambiance rather


robbrecht en daem

The chamber music room relies on a strict

Rubens Square, Knokke, Belgium Knokke, in West Flanders is an affluent seaside resort which forms part of Belgium’s continuously developed 54 kilometre coastline on the North Sea. Robbrecht and Daem were approached by the city of Knokke to design a public space on top of a private parking garage. The garage is underneath a triangular piece of ground formed by the bay of Knokke which breaks the continuous straight line of the holiday flats which front onto the beach. Rubens Square

Layout: Rubens Square

The design of this public space was approach as a kind of game, or playground and is used by a “strange mix” of young children and the elderly who own flats nearby. The public space itself consists of two lift and stair cores which connect the parking garage to street, and two long benches facing the beach. The elderly people sit on these long benches while young children ride around the square in small cars, or on bicycles. Robbrecht and Daem worked with Austrian sculptor, Franz West, who made two sculptures that sit atop the two lift and stair cores. The colour scheme for Rubens square was inspired by the muted, grey tones of the North Sea and helps to create a sort of typography in a very flat country.

The long benches attract the elderly from thier beachside flats

Children at play amongst the new topography


reflection pool on the square. The reflection pool

The harbour-based city of Antwerp was at its height

was conceived of as a mirror where the surface of

in the 16th and 17th centuries. It was the cultural

the water would reflect the proportions of the Royal

capital replacing the position formerly held by Bruges

Museum of Fine Arts’ facade. Christina Inglesias

up until the 15th Century.

designed a Eucalyptus leaf bas relief on green-

Leopold Dewael Square adjoins the Royal Museum

coloured concrete tiles which echo the green of the

of Fine Arts in Antwerp. The Royal Museum of

Layout: Leopold Dewael Square

bronze sculptures on display in the square. The pool

Fine Arts is seen as a national treasure; “The Louvre

fills and drains in a 64 minute cycle giving the square

of Belgium”. It houses many works of the Flemish

a sense of elapsing time. It creates a spectacle,

master painters. Robbrecht described the design as

encouraging the meeting of people, especially in the

being a challenge as they had to contend with busy

summer months.

traffic and a tram way which runs through the square, as well as grappling with the implications of 19th

Felix Warehouse, City Archive, Antwerp

century urban planning.

This project saw Robbrecht and Daem retrofit the

The idea was to redesign this square within the

listed Felix warehouse in the historical northern part

ambitious 19th century urban planning scheme. Two

of Antwerp’s old harbour into the city’s archives.

blocks of trees were planted on the square crossing the

Robbrect and Daem are no strangers to the design

tram way, which cuts through two large roundabouts marking either end of the square.

Leopold Dewael Square with Royal Museum of Fine Art

of archives; they have designed the archives for the city of Brussels, which have not yet been built, and

Since the redesign of Leopold Dewael Square was

are currently working on the archives for the city of

completed, it has attracted restaurants and art

Bordeaux in France.

galleries, re-enlivening this urban space. Robbrecht

The Felix warehouse, completed in 1860, typifies

and Daem incorporated the work of three sculptors

the 19th century harbour architecture of Antwerp,

and a fashion designer, Ann Demeulemeester, who has

and needed to be treated in such a way that as much

her shop on the square. Demeulemeester was invited

of the building’s original fabric was preserved. The

to design a large horse-shoe shaped bench, which is

development of the city archives form part of a

used as a meeting spot and a place for picnicking. The

broader improvement district on which work will be

sculptures of Josué Dupon and Auguste Rodin are

completed this year.

also part of the square’s design. Spanish sculptress, Christina Inglesias, with whom Robbrecht and Daem had previously worked, was

The reflection pool with bas relief bottom by sculptress Christina Inglesias

The most notable intervention in Robbrecht and Daem’s retro fit, are two large skylights have been

14 paul robbrecht

invited to design a bas relief on the bottom of

robbrecht en daem

Leopold Dewael Square, Antwerp Belgium

into the roof to bring light into the reading room on the uppermost level. The ground floor now contains a small library for children and the elderly, as well as a restaurant. Circulation in the building is mainly reliant on lifts, taking people up to the reading room. The building has a very dense structure which had a great implication on the way that the retrofit was planned. Upon original completion, it was realised that the cast iron column grid was not strong enough to support the weight of the goods in the warehouse, and so the structure was doubled by adding in timber columns.

Felix warehouse from the docks

The lack on natural light, except in the reading room, has worked well for the conversion of this warehouse into archives. Robbrecht remarked on how the design of archives is quite the opposite of how architecture is usually perceived, with its focus on light and space – the design of archives calls for a compactness of space and as little light as possible.

Ground floor plan showing dense structure

Central atrium

This project was related to the development of

area nearer to Lincoln, and provides a view of

bicycle paths through England by the organisation,

the Lincoln Cathedral, perhaps one of the most

Sustainable Transport (SUSTRANS). The idea is

important mediaeval cathedrals in England.

to promote the idea of being able to cycle from the South to the North of the country and also into Northern Ireland.

Office Robbrecht and Daem architecten/MJ

One of the cycle paths that have been developed

van Hee architect, Ghent, Belgium

is between the wool-producing Midlands town of

This architectural office is in what was an industrial

Lincoln, to the port town of Boston, from where the wool was once taken on to Bruges. SUSTRANS

Highview, Lincolnshire over looking River Whitham

area of Ghent which once had a high concentration of textile factories at their most prosperous in the

wanted to create what are called “high views”; small

19th and early 20th century.

structures along the cycle path which would allow

Robbrect described how they bought a timber frame

a cyclist the opportunity two climb up and admire

hall built in the 1960s or 70s in this previously

the views out over the flat landscape, which bears a

industrial area of Ghent and converted it into offices.

similarity to that of Flanders.

The offices were organised along one side in a strip

This historical link and geographical similarity

which takes up one third of the building and looks

between Lincoln, Boston and Bruges, prompted

on to a double height arboretum where specific kinds

SUSTRANS to look for a Belgian architect who had

of trees have been planted, taking up the remaining

done work in Bruges to be involved in the project.

two thirds of the building.

They simply googled “Bruges, Belgian Art, Flemish Art” and they came across Robbrect and Daem, and

Plans :office Robbrecht and Daem architecten/MJ van Hee architect

A pond was also added to the arboretum where people “can swim, and [keep] fish”. Robbrecht

so they were invited to take part in the project. “It’s

describes the building as a self-contained community,

sometimes as easy as that” Robbrecht commented.

where every ones works on the same floor, with

Robbrect and Daem set about designing these high

meeting rooms below.

views as a steel structure clad in timber. They used the colours of the birds that breed in Lincolnshire as an inspiration for their colour palette. Originally, three high views were to be built, but in the end there was only enough funding for two. One high view is in the countryside and provides views over the River Whitham, along which a regatta is held in

Arboretum: office Robbrecht architecten/MJ van Hee architect



16 paul robbrecht

summer. The other high view is in a semi-industrial

robbrecht en daem

High Views, Lincolnshire

Whitechapel Art Gallery, London

every door and window receiving a great deal of

Robbrecht and Daem were chosen as the architectural

attention, something that would never have been

team to design the expansion of the Whitechapel

required in Belgium. They were also expected to

Art Gallery which was organised as an international

repair the turret of the Passmore Library which was


damaged by a bomb during the Second World War.

The Whitechapel Art Gallery as it now stands is

The repair was cleverly avoided by turning the turret

on Whitechapel High Street in the East London

into an artwork.

Borough of the Tower Hamlets, an area of London

Confronting the two typologies of the buildings

with a history of deprived communities. It has been

was the main challenge during the expansion

the focus for the many waves of immigrants who

which was addresses by connecting spaces with the

have been coming to London since the 18th century. In 1881, the vicar of St. Jude’s Whitechapel, Canon

Plan: Whitechappel Art Gallery

use of skylights. In doubling the floor area of the Whitechapel Art Gallery, the amount of visitors has tripled since its opening.

Samuel Augustus Barnett and his wife Henrietta instigated an annual display of fine art as the first of a number of cultural missions to the poor. Between 1891-2, the Edward Passmore Library was

Master Plan, Antwerp Zoo

built in the late Victorian style as the first of a series

“It’s very special for me to show this in South Africa

of free libraries. In 1901, the Whitechapel Art Gallery

– I have to say [in comparison to what you have here]

was built next to the library in the contrasting

it’s a kind of stupid small space with giraffes.”

Arts and Crafts style. An entrance to the London

Here, the Antwerp zoo, which is on a very small piece

Underground’s Aldgate East Station was later added,

of land completely surrounded by the city, is being

taking some space from the library. Recently, the library was forced to relocate due to

Whitechappel Art Gallery

rethought by Robbrecht and Daem. This project includes the reorganisation of the zoo along with the

the new collectivising policy of the city’s public

landscaping which Robbrecht hopes will include a

libraries, and so it was bought by the Whitechapel

small area resembling the Savannah.

Art Gallery with the idea of expansion in to it. The Edward Passmore Library was still in operation when Robbrecht first visited the two buildings. He described as “a living space for the community”, something he wished to recapture in the expansion. Satisfying the exacting standards of English Heritage during the expansion was a task that saw

Model: Antwerp Zoo Master Plan

18 paul robbrecht

City Squares, Ghent, Belgium The city of Ghent, the capital of West Flanders and home to Robbrecht and Daem’s office, is a mediaeval walled city at one time Europe’s second largest city after Paris. This project involved the design of the city squares that surround three exemplary

robbrecht en daem

mediaeval buildings in the centre of the town, namely, St. Nicholas’ Church, the belfry and the St. Bavo Cathedral. In the 19th century, large areas of houses surrounding the church, cathedral and the belfry were torn down to show off these mediaeval monuments. The introduction of the tram to Ghent was also done in a rather severe way, cutting off the city’s monument from the public open spaces that surrounded them, and so Robbrecht and Daem have been tasked with reinventing the city’s squares. The scheme includes the building of a municipal

Layout: City Square Ghent

hall on the site of a small block of houses that were destroyed, re-establishing the boundaries of the mediaeval market place. A small park is also to be inserted between the church and the tower along with other interventions which try to recreate the ways in which these areas were once used, but does by avoiding an historical pastiche.

New green space, City Squares Ghent

City Squares Ghent


vlaams bouwmeester Stephan DEVOLDERE


S tephan d e W alt


photograph of the bouwmeester team

The session was aimed at defining and understanding the procurement procedure that is followed in Belgium. Stefan Devoldere, the deputy Vlaams Bouwmeester, described the ways in which the Flemish government has initiated the awareness, quality and magnitude of public architecture and development in their country. Stefan Devoldere started the presentation by outlining the way in which the Flemish government installed the Bouwmeester ten years ago as a semiindependent cell. The governments’ aim was to create greater possibilities for quality public buildings throughout the region. Devoldere recollected the context in which the Bouwmeester was created, he recalls this time, during the nineties, as a time “that was a sort of malaise for architects in Flanders”. A publication, known as the Year Book, was initiated by the Flemish government at the time. The publication was developed to highlight projects by Flemish architects, writings on important issues and illustrate the common “zeitgeist” of the moment. The Year Book highlighted the lack of interesting public buildings in Flanders. This was the result of limited possibilities for architects and architecture in the country and thus the Bouwmeester was established. Since its establishment, the Bouwmeester has become “a label of quality”, branded as the BWMSTR, the Bouwmeester is applied to all kinds of procurement process and public projects within Belgium.




Stefan Devoldere emphasised that the Bouwmeester was established with very specific objectives in mind. The leading, objective was to allow more possibility

R I G H T a m d A B OV E t h e y e a r b o o k p u b l i c a t i o n L E F T p a s t a n d p r e s e n t B o u w m e e s t e r s : 1 Bob Van Reeth 1999, 2 Marcel Smets 2005, 3 Peter Swinnen 2010

24 S tephan d e W alt

for quality public buildings in Flanders. To develop a long term vision for high quality architectural requirements, this vision was not just for the making of buildings but for the environment as a whole; including infrastructure, landscape and public art. One other objective was to advise and supervise the


execution of the architectural policy of the Flemish government and to institute and expand cultural and architectural awareness amongst the public and authorities. The objectives that were set, for the Bouwmeester, were initiated through a number of strategies and mechanisms. These included the election of a Bouwmeester, the Bouwmeester award, media awareness, the master class and the open call procurement procedure. Stefan Devoldere proceeded to described and outline the above mentioned procedures.



“ Through long-term vision, in consultation with different

The Bouwmeester , currently Peter Swinnen, acts as the head of BWMSTR. The role of the Bouwmeester is to give advice to government agencies and authorities. As well as organising selection procedure for important public projects. The Bouwmeester Prize The Bouwmeester prize is a prize for public clients and public commissioners. The prize is awarded to commissioners that have excelled in the handling of public projects.

administrations and involved external parties, to contribute towards policy preparation and execution of the architectural strategy of the Flemish Community, with the aim of helping to create a high quality architectural environment

in Flanders “

Master Class The master class was initiated in 1999. It is a procedure where a selection of young designers, artists and graduates, from all over Flanders, are brought together with public commissioners. The design schools within Flanders recommend one exemplary student to participate in each master class. Small public commissions are selected from local authorities. These projects are given to the designers during a week-long workshop; during these workshops designers are allowed to develop ideas and designs for each of the projects. Each project is then allocated a specific designer, who then works alongside the local authority, to develop the project into reality. The process allows for these young designers to be introduced to commissions and projects within the public realm.

A B OV E s t u d e n t s t a k i n g p a r t i n t h e m a s t e r c l a s s w o r k s h o p s BELOW projects completed by the master class



procedures which exist within Belgium. The first method of procurement is tender. Within Belgium this procedure can exist as either an open or a restricted process, however the main point that was highlighted about this procedure was that the tender which is most economically favourable is typically chosen. The restrictive offer procedure is a method through which a group of possible architects is selected. The procurement of specific projects is then determined from the pre-selected group of architects. The selection is a qualitative process and is not merely based on price, as in the tender process. The design competition is a procurement method which can be open or restrictive. The procedure of competition includes a jury of external experts and finally a negotiation process, through which the winner is chosen. The final procurement procedure is that of the open call. The open call was the main discussion of the session. The process is run and managed by the Bouwmeester and has become one of the primary means of procurement for public architecture and development within Belgium.

S tephan d e W alt

Devoldere then went on to highlight the procurement



Open Call

The open call is a procurement method that was installed, by the Flemish government, through the Bouwmeester ten years ago. Stefan Devoldere underlined that the open call is principally based on the restricted design competition in accordance to Flanders and European rules. It was described that the procurement procedure of the open call includes several processes and devices. Devoldere described these as being: I. The Bouwmeester meets with public clients and all parties involved in potential projects. He establishes all aspirations and expectations of all the stakeholders. Timing, budget, programme and ambitions are all aspects which are considered. The Bouwmeester then assists the client to define the project, design brief and documentation. II. A publication of all projects is then distributed twice a year, nationally in Belgium and across Europe. III. Designers review these lists of projects and can apply for the projects that they are interested in. Devoldere highlighted that the most important feature of the open call is that the process is completely open and unrestrictive. This means that there are no constraints on young or inexperienced designers thus allowing for opportunities for all who are interested.

in. These applications are to include a motivation for why they are applying for that specific project, three references, the team they are proposing to work with and how they intend on working on the project in question. V. The Bouwmeester reviews all the applications and makes a qualitative selection, based on the clients’ ambitions and expectations, of ten candidates for each project. VI. A second selection process is then carried out, with the client. Through this process the candidates are reduced to five. The remaining five candidates are invited to do a design proposal for the project in question.

VII. Following the above mentioned selection process a briefing for the project occurs. During this initial briefing the procedure and design brief is explained, a budget for the project is given and an on-site visit is carried out. A second, optional, briefing is then allowed. During this second briefing designers are permitted pose questions about the project and give any remarks.

S tephan d e W alt

applications for the projects which they are interested



IV. Designers then submit their portfolios and

VIII. The proposals are then submitted anonymously

The intention of the open call is to provide a

to a jury of external experts, the Bouwmeester and

procurement procedure which open and fair, allowing

the client, for assessment.

all designers and architects an opportunity to take part in public work within Belgium. Devoldere stressed that the system of the open call is trying “to

IX. The jury awards the laureates of the design

break open this tradition of always having the same

competition and then the negotiation procedure

offices winning competitions for public buildings”,


one of the aims of this procurement procedure is to allow for young inexperienced offices opportunities

X. At this point anonymity is lifted; all laureates

in the public development sector. Another important

proceed to do a formal presentation of the project,

aspect which was highlighted was the interactions

respond to questions and then the jury recommends

between the client and the selected designers. A main

which are the most appropriate candidates.

objective is to allow for the client to be confident and “comfortable with the designer that is chosen”.

XI. The client then awards the successful candidate with the contract for the proposed project. At this

Stefan Devoldere, did however, outline that

stage the involvement of the Bouwmeester stops.

the procedure of open call does have flaws or “bottlenecks”, as he put it. These flaws included: I. The initial selection process is administered by the Bouwmeester, thus “you have to trust that the Bouwmeester does a good selection.” II. The publication of the open call projects is only done twice a year, consequently processes and projects are delayed during the wait. III. Presently there exists only one version of

combination of two procedures, namely restrictive offer and design competition, there is large amount of administrative paperwork. Stefan Devoldere described how the Bouwmeester is trying to initiate debate and promotion of architecture within Belgium. The Bouwmeester is doing this through establishing relationships between the organisation and various magazines and publications, such as A Plus and the Belguim Review. These magazines include one article, in every issue, about one specific open call, through doing this the current state of architecture is put on the agenda. The Bouwmeester’s intention is to allow for the creation of a quality architecture and an expansion of cultural and architectural awareness amongst the public and authorities. Stefan Devoldere concluded the presentation by highlighting that since the introduction of the Bouwmeester the number and quality of large scale public projects has increased. He stated “So I think a lot has happened for Belgian architecture in Belgium and in Flanders.”

LEFT publications featuring articles about the open call procedure RIGHT competition submissions for the open call

S tephan d e W alt

IV. Due to the fact that the open call procedure is a



the open call.

south african procurement systems and architecture Inba Thumbiran

the ministry of public works. In her presentation, she shares some information about her legislative

Procurement reform in South Africa needs good

mandate, as well as the findings and intentions of

governance, and must introduce the application

various research endeavours being conducted as

of a system that’s “fair, equitable, transparent,

grounding for the improvement of different processes

competitive and cost effective”.

relating to procurement in the construction industry.

ABOVE Ms Inba Thumbiran FIGURE 1 CIDB Framework model for public sector procurement

She discusses various CII’s which are Construction

At the top of the pyramid in Figure 1, is a policy

Industry Indicators, and refers to a quality report

that guides the client on how to implement his

which is a discussion document that’s currently on

budget. This requires cognisance of the various laws

their website. She also deals with issues of corruption

that are applicable, including the CIDB act and

and alternative delivery models for the industry.

regulations. Further down the model, categories

In their legislative mandate they have an act

of procurement and the standards for uniformity

that guides them as the CIDB. Construction

are indicated, which she says is similar to those in

procurement needs to encourage the promotion of

place for the Bouwmeester, like the processes and

standardisation in procedures. This applies especially

negotiations. Standard operating procedures involve

to infrastructure development, and is seen as the

the CIDB guidance for clients, along with standard

route towards best national practices. There is a code

billing packages and best practices. The CIDB model

of conduct in place for all stakeholders involved in

for code of conduct underlines all procedures and she

construction procurement, which simply requests

deals with these issues later in the presentation.

industry members to be ethical and moral. She discusses the practice of contractor registration,

Purpose of the ‘Register of Contractors’

along with registration of projects and registration

Phase 1 (in place)

of professional service providers. Ms Thumbiran


explores the necessary standard for uniformity and commends the Bouwmeester system, presented by

support risk management in the tendering

reduce the administrative burden associated

Stefan Devoldere. She calls for the Department of

with the award of contracts. They try to lessen

Public Works to learn from this and to apply it to

that burden by providing pre-qualification

our South African context. Finally, her presentation

procedures on our register;

looks at the legal procedures for transgressions to the

reduce tendering costs to both clients and

CIDB regulations, whose purpose is to remedy “bad

contractors; enable effective access by the

behavior”, although compliance to these rules is

emerging sector to work(to the markets) and

34 Inba Thumbiran


south african procurement systems and architecture

Ms Thumbiran represents the CIDB, and reports to

development opportunities;

The Standard for Uniformity

size, distribution, capability and performance of

regulate behaviour of contractors;

The CIDB Standard for Uniformity in construction

professionals, as well as understanding B-BBEE

store and provide data on the size and

procurement establishes minimum requirements for:

status, a mandatory requirement during the

distribution of contractors operating within the •

procurement phase. Ms Thumbiran explains that all


the solicitation/advertising of tender offers;

it is mandatory for public sector to use it, and the

the manner in which quality is to be

register is available to private sector. • Phase 2 (under development)

assess the performance of contractors in the execution of contracts and thus provide a

incorporated in procurement documents;

In considering performance reports of professionals,

the formatting and compilation of procurement

she requests suggestions as to how to get clients to

documents; and

share data on the system. Other uncertainties include:

the application for the Register of Contractors

how to deal with disputes?; what performance

(RoC) to public sector contracts.

aspects should be measured?; and how do they deal

performance record for contractors; •

promote minimum standards and best practice.

these measures promote efficiency.

with unsatisfactory performers? The CIDB sees The client is required to register his tender advert.

performance assessments as potentially critical to the

This sends out SMS’s to all contractors registered

procurement phases of projects.

The CIDB is currently implementing performance

on the data base, under specific categories of

reports for contractors, whose results should become

contractors required to read specific tenders. This

Figure 2 shows that as projects get higher in value,

available in October or November 2011.

differs from using a government gazette, where

the client becomes less satisfied. Dissatisfaction seems

everybody reads it. This system has very low

insignificant. But that dissatisfaction amounts to

compliance from the current client base.

three and a half billion people, so it is not something

The ‘register of contractors’ exists in a capability vs capacity context.

to ignore.

Capability – inherent ability / potential to perform a

The ‘Register or Projects’ is there to gather


information on the nature, value and distribution of

In Figure 3, the “18%” portion is related to design

Capacity – concerned with having sufficient resources

the projects in order to promote, evaluate and assess

or construction related barriers, together with client

to execute a contract.

the best practices of construction work. This makes

monitoring. And at the bottom, the dissatisfaction

use of the iTender system, SMS alerts and the CIDB

is largely related to procurement barriers including

The CIDB assesses the capability of a contractor at a

tracking system. There is also a very low compliance

corruption, functionality and capacity.

point in time, which can change at any time. Clients

to this practice.

need to look at the capacity of each contractor to

Using the table in figure 4, Ms Thumbiran highlights

do specific work. This needs to be checked before an

The CIDB is working on a ‘Register of Professional

some issues. Ranked as the top three are poor self

‘on- site’ situation, where the realization of a lack in

Service Providers’, to try and manage some level

management; lack of contractor quality expertise;

capacity becomes problematic. So the CIDB ‘register

of risk and to aid clients in appointing the right

and corruption.

of contractors’ is really a first line risk management

professionals. This will also provide data on the


construction procurement. The objective is to achieve

incorporated into the South African World Skills

procurement and delivery models that promote


collaborative relationships and integrative supply

employment of professionals and contractors based on

Piloting and testing the Singapore BCA CONQUAS system in South Africa;

chains, and to strengthen the requirement for the

Figure 2 Client satisfaction for work completed in 2009.

Building and construction component to be

Strengthen the requirements for ‘quality

quality criteria, supported by performance assessment

management’ in the course content within built

reports. The reports are fundamental to informing

environment academic institutions.

this process. She also calls for the strengthening of the requirement for quality management in the course

Fraud and Corruption

content within both the environment and academic

Public Works’ contracts and construction was ranked


worldwide as the sector in which bribery of public officials was the most common, followed by Real

Recommendations •

• •

Estate and Property Development.

Flexibility to procure from CIDB registered contractors in the residential building sector

Ms Thumbiran references the Minister of Finance

where appropriate;

Pravin Gordhan in his 2010 Budget Speech who

Maintenance of the necessary technical capacity

said that “corruption is an ever-present threat” and

for the development and maintenance of

that “(p)oorly managed tender processes are all too

construction standards, codes and specifications,

often open to such abuse. Greater transparency and

including those of the SABS and the CSIR;

accountability in procurement systems will therefore

Requirements for integrity and transparency in

be a key focus of reform in the period ahead.” She

construction procurement;

is of the opinion that with some time and patience,

Procurement and delivery models promoting

these challenges are going to be met.

collaborative relationships and integrated supply •

Figure 4 Table indicating barriers to construction quality.


The CIDB Code of Conduct requires that we are

Strengthen requirements for the appointment

ableto honestly and transparently discharge our

of professional services and contractors based

duties timeously and with integrity. This applies to

on quality criteria, supported by performance

every stakeholder in the industry, to avoid conflict.

assessment reports; •

Performance assessment reports for the client’s

Inba Thumbiran

the importance of integrity and transparency in

36 south african procurement systems and architecture

agent in the public sector;

The analysis of such statistics lead her to stress

There are set criteria for a contractor to register on

by poor public investment choices, weak budget

the database. Financial indicators are very important

management, and corrupt or lethargic procurement

to get a contractor on to a certain grade. Contractors

practices”. The CIDB has produced a paper

who provided “doctored books” will find themselves

called Delivering Infrastructure at Scale, and Ms

on a blacklist. This information also becomes available

Thumbiran urges listeners to look at it.

Discipline specific consultants appointed on a percentage fee basis;

Open tenders are called for when the design is complete;

Contractors are contracted on a bills of quantities basis.

to the public. Current delivery practices The CIDB has begun conducting what is called an

Virtually all public sector infrastructure projects

Ms Thumbiran’s comment is that this is basically

‘audit blitz’ on clients, in order to understand how

in South Africa are currently delivered using a

how government works and this is leading to poor

they adhere to the CIDB standards, why they may

traditional pre-planned approach to construction


not adhere, and to apply appropriate remedies. They

which requires that the design and specifications be

intend to issue warnings and fines. This is also where

adequately developed and approved by clients before

The Office of Government Commerce in the

qualifications will be applied.

tenders are invited. This approach enables the design

UK supports the development of collaborative

to meet the client’s requirements closely and the

relationships between the government client

Collusion is against the code of conduct. The

contract when awarded can proceed without major

and its suppliers and aims to facilitate the early

investigation in to anti competitive behaviour will

change, delay or disruption. Public authorities are

appointment of integrated supply teams. Traditional,

be extended to built environment professionals. This

today under pressure to deliver projects, on time, on

nonintegrated procurement approaches should not

further emphasises the need for the CIDB ‘Register

budget, within shorter time frames. This has led to

be used unless it can be clearly shown that they offer

of Professional Service Providers’. The government

the “fast tracking” of the traditional pre-planned

best value for money, this means, in practice they will

does not want to do business with those that engage

approach to construction by the streamlining of

seldom be used.

in collusive practices. Clients that are found to be

procedures to minimise delays between activities

colluding with contractors and professionals will

and to permit activities to be undertaken out

be handed over to the CIDB who will then enforce

of sequence. This has resulted in tenders for

regulations on them.

construction works being awarded where the works are not fully or precisely scoped. In many instances,

Infrastructure delivery is something being rethought.

this has led to very disappointing outcomes. The

Ms Thumbiran states that we are not spending as

graph in Figure 5 provides an example: the final cost

we should be. During the 2009/10 fiscal period alone,

of the construction works for the 2010 world cup

some R12,4-billion, budgeted for capital projects,


was recorded as unspent. This is due to bad planning. The World Bank’s African Regional Strategy (2011)

Procurement strategy for traditional approach to

recognises that Africa’s competitiveness is “impeded


behind any agenda for change. Whichever systems are implemented, the professional must act as the conduit to the client, and convince him/ her that these are the best ways of proceeding. The basic principles for creating all mentioned changes exist in the CIDB’s standards for uniformity, guidelines and codes- and reflect much of the basis upon which the Bouwmeester system is structured. She believes that the practices being implemented into their operations will prevent poor performance and corruption over time. But she calls for the professionals of architectural and other disciplines to offer suggestions and guidance as to building on these methods as well as improving design quality, which is one of the CIDB’s major concerns. Ms Inba Thumbiran Programme Manager - Procurement & Delivery

Inba Thumbiran

of the delivery process. They are the driving force

38 south african procurement systems and architecture

Ms Thumbiran explains that clients are at the core

designing south africa



Designing South Africa is a young company, directed and founded by Zahira Asmal. Its focus and purpose is inspiring in itself. But in light of this conference’s agenda, becomes even more significant in the ways in which it points toward an innovative and

designing south africa

fresh procurement methodology for South African architects and designers. Using the 2010 World Cup as a vehicle for making global connections, she tells the story of how she found a way to expose South Africa’s talent to international audiences. Ms Asmal explains the original intention behind the company’s conception. Initiated in 2009 as a kind of report on the impact which the 2010 World Cup would have on African cities, it would investigate the relationships existing between South African designers, architects and the government- within the process of staging the international spectacle. In addition, she notes the simultaneous enquiry it would have about the potential and extent to which the event would counter apartheid’s remaining social structures, for example by integrating cities and their urban environments for the county’s societies. After seemingly challenging attempts at collecting information from several government officials and architects who had been involved, her strategy evolved into something more effective. By inviting, primarily, chief editors of various global media publications to write about South Africa amidst World Cup fever, a connection was made between local design and the world, through international media. Manifested in print, web and broadcast media, a

ABOVEFront cover of Wallpaper Magazine issued in November 2010, featuring Cape Town’s Green Point Stadium.

platform was created where South African expres-

stories to global audiences and hence South Africa as

sion- architecture, fashion, product design, graphic

a nation has entered a global procurement market.”

design- and so heritage, culture and local identity-

She poses further questions as to what systems exist

became accessible to several global audiences. Some

to sustain and further cultivate this phenomenon-

publications included Wallpaper, Design Week (UK),

and calls for the government to take initiative in

Nova (Germany), Design Boom (US), Hong Kong

creating opportunities for its people. For example, “is

Economic Journal, Axis( Japan), Financial Times and

the government hard at work in identifying our first


round of uber architects to take to Brazil and Russia for their World Cups (?)”, to share our expertise in

Under the umbrellas of “image and identity”, she

staging a mega event with, especially in Brazil’s case,

lists the themes which the investigation explored.

societies whose social challenges reflect some our

Some include “city and nation branding”, “embracing


the flag, “national heritage”, “urban South Africa”, “public spaces and assets”, “commercial branding

Strongly opposing the statement that “design in

and advertising”, “art and craft” and “transport and

South Africa is a niche topic”, Ms Asmal believes


that the key to enabling opportunities is by showcasing South Africa’s many talents- including

Ms Asmal highlights the value of the project in terms

buildings and architecture- through “exhibitions

of creating links between South Africa and the out-

and image”. She asks whether such mobilisation

side world, on interests beyond our natural resources.

could be facilitated by “an all encompassing design

In so doing, design, art and local style become the

council representative of architects alongside brand

fabric of our global identity. Her presentation raises

and identity design specialists, alongside academics,

questions about “the role media plays in brining com-

media, finance and communication specialists,

mission agents and architects together”.

urbanists as well as the government? “- having the same structural makeup of Designing South Africa’s

“To what extent do these publications connect South

advisory panel, who assisted the success of the

African architects to global projects?” “I want to


know how much work will come out of this project for South Africa’s designers?” She provides a start to

In assessing local design’s ability to communicate

answering these questions by saying that perceptions

and represent a people’s identity, Ms Asmal considers

of South African design are changing, due to projects

the symbol of the South African flag. As the nation’s

like this one. “South Africans are telling our design

visual logo within the World Cup’s context, it

ABOVE Extract from Wallpaper publication featuring South African architecture and fashion.

hosted a world- class event. In this light, she calls for an approach to design which is representative of an undivided nation to be exhibited to the world, instilling confidence in our country’s global identity. This may involve the design of “spaces for learning, working and playing that are also representative of good quality design and an image of who and what we are as a unified nation”, where people “feel welcome, safe and free to access urban spaces especially considering our apartheid past”. Surely this- together with the correct and strategic international media exposure- would evoke positive response in our foreign neighbours, creating procurement opportunities by inspiring them to invest in our nation and what it can offer. Info @

IMAGES ON LEFT IN ORDER FROM TOP TO BOTTOM Image from Ms Asmal’s presentation used to depict the South African flag as the nation’s visual logo within the World Cup’s context Image from Ms Asmal’s presentation depicting television media.. Photograph from international publication featuring the South African BRT developments.


success for a society which came together and


designing south africa

associated strong positive emotions and represented

case studies in procuring architecture

Nkosinathi Manzana

Development Agency (JDA) to present its

professional fee discounts being brought up by

procurement strategies used in large, public

various attending delegates.

developments. These strategies are used to procure professional architectural services, specifically

Presentation Proceedings

through three methodologies that consist of an open

At the start of the presentation, Mr Nkosinathi

tender process, competition process and public/private

Manzana indicated that his primary role in the JDA


followed the stereotypes of engineers that architects share: people who are concerned over “mundane

The presentation was by Mr Nkosinathi Manzana,

things” like budgets and timelines. Manzana then

a JDA representative whose presentation consisted

outlined for the audience what he was going to

of a short procurement history of the JDA, its aims

discuss with him; in principle the JDA’s experience

and works, and this was then followed by an account

with architectural procurement essentially using

of the distribution of JDA budgets. Manzana then

three methods. These include what Mazana referred

described the use of the competition process through

to as “the normal government-regulated system”

a relatively detailed account of two examples: the

of supply chain management processes of open

Kliptown development in Soweto and Constitutional

competitive tendering, architectural competitions

Hill development in Braamfontein/Hillbrow.

which have been recently used by the JDA for their

Throughout the presentation Manzana shared some

biggest projects and finally the public and private

insight to the audience of the problems and lessons

partnerships (PPP) which the JDA is to trying

learnt by the JDA when using specific procurement

implement more.

strategies. This was then followed by a brief insight into the competitive/open tendering process and

The audience was then given a short history of the

its general principles including type and scale of

JDA’s ten year existence and operations, which is

project, adjudication phases and fees. The topic of

primarily focused on the regeneration of selected

fee discounts brought quite a bit of controversy and

areas of the city and marginalized areas, by

attention from the audience, who largely consisted

investing on the behalf of the City of Johannesburg

of practicing professional architects. The final topic

in the public environment in the hope of catalysing

of the presentation consisted of a brief look at

further investment by the private sector. In terms of

other projects developed by the JDA and its position

the agency’s funding, Manzana indicated that they

on sustainability in the future. The end of the

are partially funded by an “operational grant”

presentation was followed by an open floor question

Nkosinathi Manzana

period which saw issues and enquiries about

procuring architecture

The R&D workshop invited the Johannesburg


from the City of Johannesburg and other government departments, and by a small development management fee (approximately 5%) from each project undertaken. Manzana then shed some light on how the JDA had spent five billion rand and distributed it fairly between inner-city works and works in marginalized areas, such as Soweto, Duisburg and Orange Farm. The JDA has also over the last decade, spent a significantly large portion of their expenditure (approximately 41%) on implementing the local BRT’s infrastructure and services. This emphasises the agency’s key involvement in the ongoing improvement of the city’s transport infrastructure, including bus, rail and transit systems. In addition to this, the agency has spent largely on construction (78%) while just over 12% of the agency’s expenditure history has been devoted to procurement of professional services such as architects. In concluding the general history of the JDA, Manzana emphasised that there has been a considerable shift in procurement towards a PPP method due to the decline in capital budgets. In order to gain a better understanding of the competition process of procurement that the JDA uses, Manzana then deliberated on two examples of Kliptown and Constitution Hill. The redevelopment of Kliptown, from 1993 till 1996, is an example of the procurement of architectural services through the competition process. Manzana comprehended on the

as an area severely affected by numerous social

the sequence of the design competition and the

problems including high levels of unemployment and

overall neighbourhood-level planning. The actual

illiteracy, but in contrast an area of entrepreneurial

nature and process of the competition was too object

value through formal and informal trade. He also

and site-specific, resulting in a lack of response to the

highlighted the areas historical significance as a place

local context and activities. Manzana also admitted

where the Freedom Charter was signed and the area’s

that the end product of the WSSD was poor in both

present position as an active high-retail node, through

its large scale and disruption of the local street-

the various developments of large malls in the post-

grid nature and urban vitality. Thus the overriding

apartheid era.

objective of the competition was too specific in terms of a commemoration and little attention was paid

In 1997, the council approved a “Greater Kliptown

to the actual complimentary urban framework. This

Urban Design Framework” but Manzana indicated

has now resulted in an inadequate product that is

that very little was done to implement it. This was

under-utilised and doesn’t enhance the local market

eventually addressed in 2002, when an international


architectural competition was set up to create an architectural intervention in the area. The JDA made

Manzana then shifted focus to another example

use of the competition to facilitate a much needed

that used the competition-type procurement,

new urban framework to celebrate the historical site

which was the development of Constitution Hill in

while simultaneously addressing some of its problems.

Johannesburg, which in contrast to the Kliptown

This intervention resulted in the Walter Sisulu Square

project produced better end results. The area’s

of Dedication (WSSD) which Manzana suggested was

historical significance as a heritage precinct with

a catalyst to a new formal urban framework for the

buildings such as the Old Fort and Women’s Hall

area. This framework inevitably became a product of

was influential in its appointment as a site for the

support to the WSSD, thereby leading to the renewal

Constitutional Court in the early 1990s. This then

and addition of broader interventions such as roads,

gave impetus to the JDA, with the aid of Blue IQ

formal taxi ranks and trading facilities within the

(an entity of the Gauteng Provincial Government)


and funding from the province and city, to redevelop the precinct and aid in the construction of

Manzana concluded with the Kliptown example by illustrating the various points and lessons that the JDA had learnt from its implementation and process.

Constitutional Court in 2004.

Nkosinathi Manzana

The first problem that the JDA acknowledged was

procuring architecture

historical significance and context of Kliptown


The actual process of procuring a design and architect for the project involved the implementation of an international design competition, which was organised by the National Department of Art, Culture, Science and Technology, the Department of Public Works and the City of Johannesburg. After a relatively long panel selection process, the project was awarded to a joint venture entry from two local architectural firms (OMM Design Workshop and Urban Solutions). In 2000 the redevelopment of the precinct was handed over to the City of Johannesburg, who in turn appointed primary responsibility and management of the redevelopment process to the JDA. Manzana then deliberated on the procurement lessons learnt by the JDA from the project. He suggested that a high-profile competition defined by a clear scope, project definition and detailed user requirements, was successful in procuring a range of quality entry proposals. This was then followed by a detailed adjudication process which has resulted in a successful development that is being optimally used today. The modest scale of the building illustrates that all construction costs were controlled yet optimised and this has inevitably led to a quality and sufficient maintenance and management system of the development and its precinct. Heritage considerations of the site have also presented limits on future developments that may overshadow the Constitutional Court.

competitive procurement style, Manzana then

the competitive process is dealing with government-

introduced the other procurement system of open

enforced budgetary adjustments (usually reductions),

competitive tendering or what he referred to as

that have a negative effect on the development

the “supply chain management process� that the

process and have often forced appointed architects

JDA has used consistently. The JDA practices this

to reduce their fees even further in order to hold

process on projects that are of a different scale, both

onto the project. This has inevitably caused conflicts

physically and economically, to those projects used

in the scope of design work during development

in the competition procurement style. These tenders,

and for the appointed architect, whose services are

depending on their size and location, normally attract

underpaid when compared to the regulated fees.

interest from between ten to twenty architectural bids. Manzana indicated that projects’ scopes were

Manzana also emphasised that the JDA was seeking

defined by their intended outcomes and budgets, and

quality design proposals and end products which

that professional fees were paid out as a standard

is monitored by a technical evaluation phase.

percentage. The appointment of professionals in

This evaluation is carried out by the JDA during

this type of procurement system was also relatively

the selection process that eliminates bids that

short; usually for a period of one year. Manzana also

lack sufficient skill, experience and capacity. Bids

highlighted the effect of the current global meltdown

which pass this phase are then considered for their

on this type of process, which saw drastic fee

economic value but Manzana admits that they

reductions offered by professionals to secure projects.

do not always receive the desired outputs from

These discounts have been appreciated by the JDA,

the selected bid, even though it may be the most

however Manzana did emphasise that the JDA did

economically viable proposal. Other issues that

not encourage large discounts which would lead to a

arise from this procurement method are conflicts

decline in the quality received from both the architect

in finalising design outputs between the JDA and

and in the end product or development.

appointed architect, as some architects may be too ambitious within the constrained budget or may lack

Examples of developments where the competitive

appropriate experience.

tendering process was used by the JDA include the current BRT stations in and around Johannesburg.

Manzana then drew his presentation to a conclusion

This project was a joint-venture proposal by two local

with a number of other projects that were

architectural firms: Ikemeleng Architects and Osmond

undertaken by the JDA through the competitive

Lange Architects & Planners. One of the

supply chain bidding process. These included

Nkosinathi Manzana

main problems that the JDA consistently faces in

procuring architecture

After presenting two specific examples using the


developments and upgrades around Orlando Stadium, Ellis Park and the Soccer City precinct for the 2010 Confederations Cup. The JDA has also been involved in upgrading and reactivating inner city parks for various communities within Johannesburg. The JDA has acknowledged the effects of climate change and its presence in future developments. Manzana finally concluded his presentation by reflecting on the idea that the JDA wanted to be a leader in implementing recycled building materials and promoting green buildings. Open Floor Question Period MC Ms Lola Haba (SAIA) then opened the floor to attending delegates for questions. Delegate- Mr Kemele Moloi (MDS Architecture) had a generally enquiry about the appointment of professionals based solely on their consideration of urban development schemes in the project. He also questioned the economic feasibility and impacts that these schemes have on projects and the general approach that the JDA uses to ensure fair and equal appointment opportunities for all architects. Manzana shared a belief in the competitive tendering procurement system that allows for architectural creativity and exploration but this is often interrupted by a confinement of budget impositions from a developer’s perspective. This type of procurement therefore actually limits architectural exploration and creativity, especially when expected outcomes (including implementing urban

start of a project which isn’t flexible. However,

Kamstra Architect) argued that this general

Manzana indicated this could be dealt with by

acceptance of “flexible fee bidding” or discounts

providing an initial budget based on the winning bid

from architects by the JDA completely jeopardises

and then allowing for slight increases when in the

the creativity and quality from local architects.

detailed design development phase, that would allow

Kamstra also suggested that a council of architects

for more creativity and high quality.

(SAIA) was setup to propose and decide on fixed fees that were appropriate for the scale of projects

Delegate- Mr Pheta Mofolo (Archcor Architecture)

and that this was being undermined by the JDA’s

raised a general enquiry about the nature of the

acceptance of such discounts. Kamstra emphasised

discounts offered by architects, specifically in

to Manzana that this was a serious issue that had to

the competitive tendering procurement system.

be dealt with but she appreciated that the JDA were

He suggested that this “discounting mechanism”

looking to limit these discounts by implementing

undermines the integrity of the architectural

a policy and focussing on the appointment of

profession in terms of concepts and design quality

professionals based on their skills and quality.

delivered, and that eventually architects are only selected on their low fees and not on their skill. He suggested that the JDA has to control this by implementing a policy that assures procuring of skill/ quality over low fees. Manzana agreed with this opinion and suggested that the JDA were looking at implementing some form of control specifically on the percentage of fee discounts offered by architects. He did however suggest that non-professional (or “non-designers”) discounts and small professional discounts were welcomed but that the JDA was concerned over the large discounts (some as high as fifty percent) offered by architects, that could negatively affect the quality of their desired product in the future.

Nkosinathi Manzana

Delegate- Ms Mira Fassler Kamstra (Mira Fassler

procuring architecture

development schemes) are enforced from the very




Social housing institutions also procure projects

procurement aspect of a number of different projects

in one of two ways; either through municipal

which have come out of a large body of research that

delivery, requiring large-scale contractors, or

SHiFT has been engaged in.

through independent delivery, where professional

SHiFT is an organisation which does not implement

teams are procured which is akin to the more

housing but rather advocates, lobbies, advises and

traditional client/architect relationship.

recommends on policy issues. The formation of this organisation came out what Arvanitakis put

Housing Types

as: “Realising that my role as an architect in a

These four main methods of procuring housing in

development context needs to be broader than what

South Africa relate to the wide range of housing types

we were taught in our architectural schools...[which

that are currently delivered in South Africa. At the

has been a role that] doesn’t really encompass the

bottom end of the housing ladder, and falling outside

development objectives of our country.”

government subsidy, are the homeless (who are often

Methods of Procurement in Housing

not accommodated for in housing strategies), informal

Arvanitakis outlined procurement in South Africa’s

housing and backyard rentals. A step up are the

housing sector as being done in four:

housing types which fall within government subsidy;

The informal sector uses a very informal

these are the PRP houses (as mentioned earlier),

procurement processes, one in which neighbours

cooperative housing, transitional housing, community

and relatives are negotiated with around how

residential units, self contained or social housing,

housing needs are built and implemented.

social rental housing, and affordable or finance linked

Individuals (private and mortgage bond housing

housing. At the upper end of the housing scale is the

developments), which refer to either home-

mortgage bond or private sector housing.

builders using emerging contractors (1% of this kind of development use architects), or developers using large-scale contractors and are usually turnkey-typed projects. •

The government, when implementing housing projects do so in one of two ways: the People’s Housing Process (PHP), where people revert back to being the home builder or the fully subsidized housing where government sets out tenders for


(Social Housing Focus Trust) presented the


the development of mass scale deliveries.

Diane Arvanitakis, Managing Director of SHiFT


Homeless - Alexandra

traditional manner, with only 1% of home owners

The procurement strategy here is done through

procuring the services of an architect. Management

negotiations within social networks. Security of

is done by the property owner, and security of tenure

tenure is insecure and involves defining and marking

is secure; title deeds are held by owner and the tenant

territory - either internal or external spaces which

has a lease agreement. In this case there is an almost

have been invaded.

equal proportion of rental to ownership.

Informal Settlement – House Alfred, Alexandra

“Give Away” House – Cosmo City

Procurement is through negotiation with social

A “Give Away house is a fully subsidized home of

networks and involves the claiming of land and the

approximately 35 square metres. In most cases, it

building of temporary structures that are slowly

is a mass scale developer-driven delivery process.

upgraded over time as perceived security is increased.

Municipal procedures use housing subsidies as the

The tenure type is largely ownership with a low

funding and procure large-scale contractors, where

proportion of rentals.

the architectural component is later included in




Informal Settlement – House Alfred, Alexandra

Backyard Rentals – House Khosa, Alexandra

Backyard Rentals (Formailsed) – Linden House, Linden

“Give House

Fully Subsidised Mixed Tenure – AlexK206, Alexandra

a turnkey-style development. In Cosmo City, the Backyard Rentals – House Khosa, Alexandra

management incorporates the developer and the

These rental units are developed by what Arvanitakis

property owner; this has expanded the role of what

called “business entrepreneurs...making a deliberate

has traditionally been the role of the developer.

decision to generate income from their assets”. A

Tenure is in the form of title deeds.

kind of informal funding through savings, or income generated from renting out other backyard rooms,

Fully Subsidised Mixed Tenure – AlexK206,

allows a home owner to develop units of this kind on


their property. The management is by the property

The K206 in Alexandria, Extension 9 and 10 is an

owner and security of tenure is secure for the person

interesting example of a fully subsidised home of

renting based on the payment of rent

35 square metres with the inclusion of 2 separate rental units. The same methods of funding and

Backyard Rentals (Formailsed) – Linden House,

procurement have been used as in the previous “Give


Away” example. Tenure is in the form of title deeds

Any one of us who own a property and have built a

and lease

guest cottage or rent out a guest cottage or a garage are in formalized back yard rental. Formal funding structures allow contractors to be procured in a


Away” City

higher than the ownership component as two rooms

accessing the Social Housing Capital and fund loans.

are rented from unit.

The housing units are separate rooms, with shared ablutions and kitchens. Housing of this type has the

Fully Subsidised People’s Housing Project,

added value of social amenities such as playgrounds,

Masisizane, Ivory Park

crèches, homework centres and in the case of BD

In the fully subsidised PHP process, government

Alexander, even a small cinema. Management is

housing subsidies are accessed in order to procure

done via Social Housing Institution tenure is secured

the services of small, local contractors and artisans,

through affordable rent.

Fully Subsidised People’s Housing Project, Masisizane, Ivory Park

Transitional Housing (Shelters) Living Stones, Burgers Park Pretoria

Community Residential Units - BG Alexander, Hillbrow

Community Residential Units - BG Alexander, Hillbrow

or the house is self-built. These projects are usually managed by the property owner in collaboration with

Community Residential Units - BG Alexander,

informal neighbourhood structures. Tenure is in the


form of title deeds, and most properties are owned,

Brickfields is a typical example of the self

rather than rented.

contained social housing unit, similar in style to a self-contained flat and with a similar procurement

Transitional Housing (Shelters) Living Stones,

process. Brickfields is an example of a development

Burgers Park Pretoria

in which the developer accessed housing subsidies and

*Run by SHiFT design competition

supplemented those with loan agreements, creating

Transitional units are meant to be stayed in

a credit linked housing model. This was a developer

temporarily; for no more than two years. The housing

-driven process, based on a turnkey contract style.

units are separate rooms, with shared ablutions and kitchens. Social Housing Capital subsidies and loan

Mortgage/Bonded House - Buccleuch

funds are accessed by the Social Housing Institution

Mortgage/bonded housing includes self-contained

who then enters in to a formal agreement with large

houses, row houses (town houses) and flats.

scale contractors. Management is done via Social

Individuals who can afford to go to the bank obtain a

Housing Institution and it’s a highly secure from of

bond that is paid off over time can obtain title deeds.

tenure through subsidised rent.

Management is done either by a body corporate or by property owners. Developments are either individual

Community Residential Units - BG Alexander, Hillbrow Community residential units use the Social Housing Institution to drive the procurement process using

or developer driven.

Mortgage/Bonded House Buccleuch


the professional team and a large scale contractor by


agreements, and perceivably, the rental component is


Rural Homestead

how government subsidised housing contributes

These are self-contained homesteads often with

to restructuring these dysfunctionalities of South

differing access to bulk services and subsistence

African human settlements.

farming. Procurement in this case is individually-

Resistance to having a wide range of housing types

driven and security of tenure is through tribal

being inserted within an existing neighbourhood has

negotiation and relations with the chieftain as well as

come mainly from the suburbs. Arvanitakis believes

personal inheritance. Additional services are the bare

that both the suburbs and informal settlements

minimum in the case of the rural homestead.

could be positively invigorated by inserting a range

Rural Homestead Urban Homestead

of housing types. Urban Homestead The urban homestead is most often self contained

Neighbourhood Planning

homes, flats or town houses. Procurements is either

Arvantakis highlighted that there was a definite

individual or developer-driven. Management is done

gap in the planning instruments used by local

either by a body corporate or by property owners.

municipalities. This gap is in the development of

Only 1% of this kind of development makes use of

neighbourhood planning.


The role of long term neighbourhood planning is to become a mechanism for emotional and financial

(Not) In My Back Yard Exhibition

commitment (beyond political changes); to give

This is an exhibition of all the housing types that

municipalities some authority and instrument to

have been outlined above. (Not) In My Back Yard

negotiate funding and to ensure sustainable and

comes out of SHiFT’s strong belief in the role that

incremental development of the built environment to

these housing types have in restructuring our society

meet needs of each settlement.

and questions people’s resistance to having a wide

In addressing neighbourhood scale, SHiFT suggests

range of housing types in their neighbourhoods.

that cities be divided up into neighbourhoods that

The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research

are a one-hour-walking-distance-wide. This could be

(CSIR) ranks South African cities among the most

done along with the establishment of project steering

inefficient and wasteful urban environments in the

committees and neighbourhood committees that

world. This is attributable low-density urban sprawl,

set up relationships with municipalities and ward

the fragmented nature of cities, strong cultural

councillors to draw up visions for neighbourhoods.

divisions between residential areas, the separation

This is based on SHiFT’s

of areas where work and concentrated shopping and public facilitie. It is the role of SHiFT to expose

(Not) In My Back Yard Exhibition

residential area and has developed a vision; it will

In the layout stage, a positive change in promoting

continue to perpetuate that vision over time beyond

the role of the architect would be through an

any political changes.

increase of competition-driven tender processes,

Arvanitakis said that more options could be given

which avoid the problems arising in the housing

in social housing if the funding went towards the

community from turnkey style projects. At

development of the social housing framework, or

very least there could be more engagement with

neighbourhood planning. She used the analogy of

professional bodies to ensure the quality of the

a crate with bottles to illustrate what SHiFT is


promoting as a change in the process of delivery. The crate represents the framework, i.e., shared spaces

Bill of Responsibilities

and services which can easily ‘carry’ different housing

Arvanitakis ended off her presentation with The Bill

types, or ‘bottles’: “so if you choose to drink Fanta or Sprite it comes from a bottle and anyone of those can be carried by the public system.”

of Responsibilities, pertaining to our responsibilities, Changes in the process of delivery Extracted from Tsela Tshweu: Towards a vision for human(e) settlements (2010)

Using a series of graphs, Arvanitakis showed how South Africa could start moving toward the bell curve that represents the balance of income groups in developed counties. This would be achieved when there is an even mix of income groups living in the same neighbourhood, and not through the compartmentalisation of the modernist approach to zoning. The Role of the Architect in Informal Settlement Upgrading Arvanitakis outlined the complexity of the issues in the informal settlement upgrading process and how the role of the architect could be promoted in an effort to change the current lack of impact that architects have in this sector. In the informal sector, the architect tends to take

perhaps most importantly as architects, in ensuring the right to live in a safe environment. These responsibilities would be to promote sustainable

on the typical role of agent between a community, the client and a municipality in the development of guidelines and principles towards enabling a Neighbourhood Spatial Development Plan. Once the Neighbourhood Spatial Development Plan is in place, there is the additional role of the architect as part of the professional team in the rollout of various stages of delivery, specific to informal settlements. It was suggested that the architect’s role as part of a professional team could be encouraged by assisting in the monitoring of professional conduct and procurement of experienced professionals. This could also be done by being involved in the long term visions for Neighbourhood Spatial Development Plans which would allow for appropriately located developments and meaningful PPP’s that contribute

development and the conservation and preservation of the natural environment; the protection of animal and plant-life, as well as the responsibility to prevent pollution; and in the context of climate change, the obligations to ensure resources like water and electricity are not wasted. “As architects, we have vision to present the opportunities of these challenges.”


to sustainable developments.


belief that once a community inhabits its own


department of public works

Linda Mampura

Works ( DoPW) was asked to be a part of the

The R&D Workshop invited Mr Linda Mampura,

workshop in providing a general overview of the

of the South African National Department of

current legislature and procurement in place for

Public Works, in order to get a view of the current

architectural services within the public sector.

legislature and an overview of the procurement that is placed for architectural services within

This presentation was conducted by Mr Linda

the public sector. The DoPW are viewed as the

Mampura, who emphasised prior to the start of

custodians of all state owned property and are

the presentation that he hoped he would provide

involved in numerous projects such as capital

valuable insight to the audience, and that they

works projects, repair and renovations, at times the

would appreciate the department’s procurement

practice of repair and maintenance (often referred

system as one based on “transparency, fairness and

to as “REPM”) and the leasing of a building. Mr

accountability.” Mampura started with a brief

Mampura also acknowledged that at the time there

introduction of the DoPW and its involvement

was a controversial leasing deal that was highlighted

in various public projects. This was followed by a

by the media, and that the department did have a

deliberation of the role and key aspects of architects

role in it, which he was willing to discuss the merits

within the DoPW and its procurement/management

and the demerits of the deal.

systems. A brief outline of the four procurement methods used by the DoPW was then presented,

The DoPW is involved in a numerous range of

which consist of the open tender system, the

projects that involves various typologies. These

nominated system, the negotiated route and finally

include district offices such as service centres for

the roster system. An insight was then provided

the Department of Labour, Department of Home

into the monitoring committees and systems used

Affairs, national police stations, prisons, border

in the different procurement methods, which were

posts and “prestige”. These “prestige” projects are

later discussed in detail. Mampura concluded his

identified as key buildings by the ministers and

presentation with a brief presentation of project

include the likes of heritage buildings, ministerial

examples that DoPW was involved in. The end of

and presidential residences.

the presentation was not followed by an open floor

Mr Mampura also deliberated on the role of

question period due to time constraints.

architects within the DoPW and suggested that they have a small practicing role as most professional services are outsourced. As a consequence, most architects’ roles within the department are

66 Linda Mampura

Presentation Proceedings

department of public works

The South African National Department of Public

managerial and administrative in terms of advising and providing insight in the running of projects. Additionally, department architects also enforce and administer that certain compliances are met in projects with regards to certain regulations such as the National Building Regulations (NBR) and local laws. Mr Mampura also informed the audience that department architects also participated in some of the NBR’s sub-committees and aided in updating the regulations. The implementation of security requirements are also of concern and department architects inform what are known as security committees that consist of department professionals, the national intelligence agency and the South African Police Services (SAPS). South African heritage buildings are also highly valued and protected and thus the department architects monitor compliances with the South African Heritage and Resource agency. In order to maintain a specific quality of building, the DoPW consistently monitors works and this is implied by their departmental studies and a document of a comprehensive list of specifications that prescribes what materials, components and finishes are to be used. Mr Mampura also highlighted other key aspects in the role of department architects, which included cost monitoring, sustainability and life cycle ramifications of a project. Energy efficiency has also been of the department’s focus and while it hasn’t been legislated

architects to register with the department’s

department still gives guidance to consultants with

database, which is a rotational system.

regards to energy issues. Compliance with RATCHET in terms of the Occupational, Health and Safety Act

Mampura then returned to the controversial

was also monitored.

leasing deals and set upon shedding some insight on the matter. He suggested that perhaps the

After the deliberation of the role of department

very controversy was a direct effect of the

architects, Mampura then shifted attention to

human intervention in the negotiation method of

the actual four procurement methods that the

procurement. However, Mampura did emphasise that

department practiced:

the procurement system was consistently monitored by various committees in ensuring “transparency

1) The first is the preferred and main method

and accountability”.

that is the “Open tender system” which is primarily for projects valued above

These committees consisted of a “bid specification

R500 000.00. These projects are handled

committee” in defining the sourcing strategy. This

mainly by the head office. This method

committee would specifically look at the nature and

makes use of a roster system, based on what

characteristics of the project and what it entails in

is known as a “database supply chain” where

terms of construction methods and the project’s

architects are appointed on a rotational basis.

realisation. The committee would then accordingly implement one of the relevant procurement

2) The “Nominated System” is a short listing

methods. Another committee is the “bid evaluation

of four companies preferred for a particular

committee” who analyse the received bids in terms

project, the winning bidder is then selected in

of their validity and legitimacy towards the project.

what Mampura referred to as a “competitive

The final committee is known as the “bid adjunction

acquisition process”.

committee” who gives the final approval of the intended procurement process. Mampura however

3) The “Negotiated Route”, used especially in

did indicate a problem in the system, in saying “In

leasing deals, Mampura suggested was not

some of our procurement systems…the methods

themost preferred because of its subjection

that I mentioned, we [often avoid] the steps that we

to human intervention.

are supposed to go through. So we need to have some sort of motivation to say why we had to go that

4) The “Roster System” enables practicing

route. And therefore the bid adjudication committee

department of public works

Linda Mampura


as yet, Mr Mampura did emphasise that the

will veto that sort of method, [and] that approach

they too follow the same vetting process as in the

that we used.”

open tender system. The winning bidder would be chosen primarily on the basis of the proposed design.

The tendering/procurement methods were then

Once again Mampura emphasised the role of the

further discussed in detail. The first method of the

“bid adjunction committee” in monitoring the whole

open tender system would be typically advertised

process and giving its final approval of the method

in main local newspapers, as well as in government


tender bulletins on the department’s website. An interested bidder (architect) would then be asked to

The “least popular method”, as Mampura put it,

attend a compulsory tender briefing and pay for the

is the negotiated method that was typically used

tendering documents. Once filled in, these documents

for leasing deals and emergency projects. In such

will be resubmitted along with the design proposal

a case the senior official or project manager would

and then all submissions would be adjudged and a

have to approach the chief director or the supply

winner would be selected.

chain management, and would have to justify the favourable choice of a particular company. This

The roster system would involve a procurement

company would still have to go through the vetting

division or “supply chain management” system that

process (as in the other processes) and then once

would receive applications and go through an entire

awarded the tender, they would have to follow

verification process. This verification process would

through a ratification process.

consist of the status of the applicant’s company, their financial standing, tax clearance and their

Mampura shed some light on some of the internal

general background. They would also inquire into

processes that go on within professional services

the company’s certification from regulating bodies

with regards to a project. In general, a “client

such as SACAP. Mampura indicated that the system

department” for example the Department of Justice,

worked as a cycle; once a company was appointed and

would need a court building and this would be

they had completed the tendered project, they would

communicated to the Departments of Public Works

return to the start of the cycle.

through the KAM (Key Accounts Management) division of the Public Works. The client department

The nomination method is particularly used for

would submit a needs assessment or what is often

competitive-based projects, where there are key

referred to as a pre-design request to the KAM

interested parties in winning the project. The four


companies are selected from the roster system and

and put together a planning request document. This

ahead with the tender.

document would give background information to the anticipated project, the scope of the work, a list

The presentation came to its conclusion with

of spaces required (often referred to as a “space and

Mampura giving insight on particular projects that

cosmos document”) and the particular use and user

the Department of Public Works was involved in.

of a space, the square meters of the space and then

These included the preservation and restoration

a cost factor for each space and budget. Often it is

of the Melrose House in Pretoria, which is of

expected by the Department of Public Works, that

heritage significance, the Freedom Park project in

the planning instruction will come with a clearance

Pretoria which was a joint venture between various


companies, and the department’s involvement in The Union Buildings’ ongoing maintenance and

This planning certificate would then be received

restoration of certain facilities within its precinct.

by one of the department’s directorates known as special and major projects, who would then allocate

The floor was not opened for any questions at the

the project to a particular senior manager. The

end of the presentation due to the shortage of time

senior project manager will then begin a process of

and delegates were asked to reserve their questions

interaction with the professional services; a copy

for the scheduled panel discussion.

of a PI will be submitted for signing by director generals of both the Department of Public Works and the client department. This is returned to the project manager with a PR 161 form that has a staff allocation list: each member of staff is assigned to an appointed private professional. Simultaneously, the project manager would begin the procurement process at this stage and solicit the services of a consultant. The winning consultant would then be appointed with a letter of appointment which states the scope of services, the rules of engagement, contractual obligations of both parties etc. This would then all culminate in a sketch plan committee meeting, where

70 Linda Mampura

all stakeholders would give final approval to go

department of public works

The KAM division would then assess the requirements

closing panel discussion and key notes


Flemish system. Mampura’s view suggests that

effective and need improvement. This discussion

developed countries such as Finland face challenges

mainly emphasised a consideration of increasing

that are of a completely different nature to that of

the propositions and quality of architecture in

South Africa. South African public projects need

South Africa, especially with current local skills and

to have, as Mampura suggested, a “multi-faceted

scenarios that need to be acknowledged.

approach…[that are driven by] social, economic and socio-political challenges. Our projects need to

Kgaka then began the proceedings of the panel

encompass [local] labour-intensive methods that

discussion by posing a specific question to the panel

would hopefully give [new] opportunity for the

that specifically related to the current public sector

EPWP (Expanded Public Works Programme). ”

procurement methodology.

Mampura informed the audience that the EPWP is a youth training program that promotes the

Chair: Ms Lola Kgaka (SAIA)

Ms Lola Kgaka (SAIA & Chair): “With the current

creation of new contracting companies which is run

skills that we have and the not so much political but

by the trained people. This should then promote

Acting MC and Chair Ms Kgaka brought the day’s

the re-dressing of our history, how can these very

and emphasise social and economical growth and

proceedings under review through a brief recap and

systems that we’ve looked at be called upon to ensure

allows for engagement with the community and

discussion. She suggested that the workshop had been

that in an environment where we have such inequality,

stakeholders on another level. Mampura did however

successful in highlighting the various possibilities and

we can have an equitable facilitation of procurement

acknowledge the problem and challenge of service

practices of the procurement of architecture both

that allows for the growth of the skills base? That

delivery in South africa that provides appropriate

internationally and in South Africa. The workshop

we [ensure] that the demographics of our country

and adequate accommodation of both the client’s

was also informative to practicing professionals in the

are eventually represented and that the architectural

and users’ needs. These challenges are even more

audience, in describing and indicating the manner

quality offered is increased and the quality of that is

difficult to deal with when faced with very tight time

and cause of certain procurement methods that are

increased within the South African context?


Mr Linda Mampura (DoPW) responded to the

Stefan Devoldere (Vlaams Bouwmeester) felt that the

The closing panel discussion was aimed to analyse and

question by suggesting that there may be no simple

importance of CAPE (as presented by Ms Coroline

discuss the various methodologies used in producing

answer or solution, specifically due to the historical

Sohie) as an advisory organisation which monitored

local public architecture and what were the challenges

context (of South Africa) that the professionals

quality was very relevant for acquiring quality

and successes of these particularly in the South

and organisations are in. He emphasised that the

architecture in South Africa. He also highlighted the

African context. In addition to this, there would be

present local context is that of a developing country

significance in CAPE as an organisation which was

a reflection of the valuable lessons and insights that

which faces very unique challenges, when compared

similar in principle to the Bouwmeester and could

could be adopted from the international precedents

to international procurement systems such as the

currently in use by various organisations.


presented and the local practices that are already

putting out “an open call”. He also suggests that the first step of a project’s definition is crucial

Sohie emphasised that this mentorship programme

in understanding the various social, cultural and

would place trained people in key positions of public

economic issues involved and how these need to

procurement, who have the “intellectual capacity” in

be understood and addressed appropriately by

making key decisions that allow for the development

the project team. Another point that Devoldere

of high-quality public buildings.

stressed on was the inclusion of young architects

therefore enhance and promote quality architecture

and professionals, particularly in final appointments

Diane Arvanitakis’ (SHiFT) response to the opening

in big projects, in order to allow for creative growth

question by the chair was sharing an opinion of

in South Africa and resulting in quality projects.

“housing not sexy enough” to actually procure

He concluded by requesting the DoPW to consider

relevant architectural professionals. Arvanitakis

“union interventions” in public projects, that ensure

suggested that there was a gap that existed between

constant monitoring of public developments and

architecture and housing which needed to be dealt

result in a high-quality end product which is also

with, specifically the issue of housing in the level

appreciated by the public.

of architectural education. She indicated that the only existing intervention between social housing

in South Africa. Devoldere expressed a deep concern for the discontinuation of CAPE in early 2011 and

Caroline Sohie (ARUP) agreed with the difficulties

and architecture students was the “SHiFT” housing

what its repercussions would be for South African

and challenges faced by a developing country

competition and more emphasis on social housing was

architecture. However Ms Sohie’s view was that the

such as South Africa however, she emphasised the

required. Arvanitakis also suggested more emphasis

organisation had in fact not been discontinued but

existence of capabilities that are still to be utilized

on the issues of sustainability at an architectural

was merged.

to their fullest. Sohie also suggested that developing

education level that would provide better results in

countries should produce contemporary solutions

obtaining public “green buildings” in the future.

Devoldere then shifted focus in response to Kgaka’s

and proactive tools in procurement, like those of the

opening question in acknowledging Mampura’s views

Bouwmeester, that are relevant to the challenges

Architectural education and what objectives it

of different challenges faced by different countries.

faced. She also emphasised the provision of future

constitutes also need to be rethought, according to

However he emphasised that some similarities do

high-quality public environments meant that there

Arvanitakis, in order to encourage diversity in the

exist in both developed countries and South Africa,

should be a close-working relationship between the

field and to procure appropriate public buildings in

which need to be considered in order to develop

public government bodies and professional bodies.

the future. She also highlighted the lack of

quality projects and designers. Devoldere stressed the

This should result in a “multi-disciplinary” aspect

importance of understanding the various disciplines

which has the capability of creating a “mentorship

involved in a project and the Bouwmeester ensures

programme” that allows for critical key decisions to

that there is a general understanding of these when

be made by specific people in strategic positions.

often result in inappropriate designs and buildings

people who provide the service and don’t necessarily

in their context. His second issue also related to

relate to the service they are providing. Asmal

social housing projects run by developers and the

suggested that perhaps this is the result of South

government’s attitude in these developments,

Africa’s past and its new-found freedom that still

where large budgets have been set aside but there

needs to be understood by individuals; public services

is no quality monitoring implemented by the

and environments that individuals are now entitled

government and this results in inappropriate physical

to and should expect.

environments. Liso raised this issue with Linda Mampura (Department of Public Works) and wanted

Open Floor: Questions to the Panel

to know why this attitude still exists and why there was no government intervention in creating better

Delegate 1 raised an issue regarding the consideration

public environments.

of cost escalation during a project, particularly in

understanding of the value and role of an architect by various public bodies that often inhibit the procurement of architects in various projects. This is complimented by a lack of transparency and easy access to new projects and opportunities for professionals, which further ignores and undermines their value and input that is crucial in producing high-quality public buildings. Arvanitakis concluded by highlighting the need and recognition of social housing in South Africa, which represents over thirty percent of the housing demands. This needs to be considered by both public bodies and professional architects well into the future. Zahira Asmal (Designing South Africa) shared a personal insight on South Africa’s poorly-perceived service delivery and what its reasons may be. She suggested that this poor service delivery may not be

the Open Tender System of procurement used by

Linda Mampura (DoPW) responded to the question

the Department of Public Works. He questioned

of cost escalation during a produces an initial budget

the appointment of architects based specifically on

for a tender and this should be a constraint for

their initial cost estimate that is often extremely

bidders to work with and consider. He indicated that

under-calculated and eventually drastically grows

this budget needs to be consistently considered by

and how fair this is to other submissions who were

architects during the bidding process to avoid future,

over looked, specifically when their initial cost-

unforeseen escalations if appointed. This escalation is

estimates were more realistic. Another issue raised

also controlled by practicing a continuous interaction

was the actual delivery system used in social housing,

between the department’s own professionals, such as

especially how it meets great demand or “back log”

quantity surveyors, and the bidders. This facilitates a

and counteracts current political tactics that include

continuous monitoring system by the department to

the appointment of numerous title deeds that are

check that all aspects of the project meet the budget

actually never met.

and this is complimented by a small variation order that allows for slight escalation.

Maha Liso suggested that there was a fault in the tender process and this was specifically evident in architects being forced to use government-approved, “generic drawings” for projects. He emphasised that these do not allow for creative flexibility and


a “training problem” but the problem may lie in the

Diane Arvanitakis (SHiFT) then proceeded to

quality housing rather than bulk housing. There is

respond to the questions on the local social housing

also a shift in expected housing types; the government

systems. In terms of addressing the demand of

is currently looking at the option of implementing

social housing and meeting the back log, Arvanitakis

subsidised rental housing which is more relevant for

suggested that this perception of meeting all the


demands within a specific time frame is quite

Professor Brendan interjected this response by suggesting to Mampura that perhaps the problem of cost escalations lay in the initial government agendas to focus on “cheap” alternatives and contracts. He indicated that these “cheap contracts” were unrealistic in producing a development and this inevitably leads to the increase in costs and often results in a poor end product. Linda Mampura’s (DoPW) response was that a department- defined project scope should avoid such a scenario and he again emphasised the role of set budgets and that these budgets are often very accurate both in cost and scale of the development. Mampura stressed the responsibility of the architect’s understanding and consideration of this when bidding to prevent escalations.

unrealistic and needs to change. Her opinion was

Linda Mampura recognised the issue of generic

that there needs to be a shift in focus to “delivering

drawings being unsuitably being applied to all

housing” and finding new housing solutions that are

sites as “unfortunate” and that the DoPW did not

not based on one type. A broad range of housing

promote this practice. He suggested that architects

options need to meet different lifestyles and this

were chosen to apply their creativity to these generic

will be the solution to meeting the back log, in

drawings and then provide a suitable design to the

contrast to “RDP give away houses” which won’t as

relevant context. Mampura also deliberated on

Arvanitakis emphasised. The broad range of housing

the problem of untrained project managers who

should also promote diversity in neighbourhoods

don’t have the relevant skills or experience to allow

and professionals should also consider how these

for creative flexibility, and this often hampers the

neighbourhoods can be easily accessible to services

development of a high-quality end product.

including transport. Caroline Sohie then added that this issue is perhaps Arvanitakis’ opinion on social housing developments,

underlined by the very dilemma of what is South

specifically RDP projects that are crime ridden

African identity and how to represent that in the

and offer “no social cohesion” is a quantity versus

built environment. Sohie indicated that the issue

quality issue that needs to be resolved. There is

isn’t just in poorer areas but also in high-income

also a general lack of understanding in the public/

neighbourhoods, where there is no real attempt in

private partnerships between the government as

defining and representing a South African identity.

land suppliers and developers who develop the

This identity crisis has a huge impact in preventing

houses. The result is a lack of attention from the

social cohesion or “integration” which is evident in

government’s side in terms of obtaining the quality

RDP developments. Sohie suggests that this dilemma

that is deserved, in relation to the value of the land.

has also evidently created social issues and general

Arvanitakis did however mention that government

lack of integration

has acknowledged this issue and that it is now more stringent with developers in terms of receiving

and perhaps this is a stage where professional

this system. This roster system is still applicable

architects maybe consulted by public bodies.

for all bids for National Public works. However, the

The issue may also allow for the proposal of an

government was looking into a new system which

independent advisory board or a government-

Chipaco referred to as the “PSSR” and was still

appointed advisory, as seen in the Bouwmeester’s

to be implemented. The PSSR system aimed to

affect in intervening when necessary during a

connect all the separate, provincial roster bases into

project’s briefing and scoping stage.

a single, national roster database that is run by the

Entry levels in public work procurement also

government. This would allow all architects to be

need to be revisited, which provide equal

registered on the system and should give them equal

opportunities for previously disadvantaged

bidding opportunities for new developments.

companies or start-up companies. Simultaneously, t.he levels of experience gained

with public services, resulting in environments that don’t produce opportunities or communities. Delegate 2 posed a direct question to Mr Mampura


versus the quality and innovation obtained from

Mc Ms Kgaka then brought the workshop to an end

open design competitions need to be emphasised

with a brief overview of the day’s events and the

and practiced more frequently.

discussions that came about. Haba provided a brief overview through various points:

Votes of thanks were extended to the various

The workshop illustrates various interactions

presenters and attending delegates, as well to as

and exchanges that appear to indicate a

to the workshop’s sponsors and partners. These

renewed engagement between the public sector

included the Flemish Government, the JDA, the Wits

and professional bodies and service providers.

School of Architecture and Planning and SAIA.

regarding the transparency of the procurement system used by the DoPW and specifically how or which roster system is being used today.

This seems to be directing the procurement of services in the built environment to a positive

Linda Mampura suggested that the department was

setting and should present new opportunities for

in the process of dismantling the roster system and producing a new procurement system that was in line with the Preferential Policy Procurement Act (PPFA). In terms of the roster system, Mampura passed the question to his senior Mr Chipaco who was a member of the audience. Mr Chipaco revealed that existing roster system has been in use for well over the past fifty years and that

both the public and private sectors. •

Another strong point that came through in the workshop is that the project briefing is a critical stage in procurement. This stage should be rethought or made clearer to professionals, specifically with regards to budget constraints and the scope of work required. It is critical to avoid numerous situations of project escalations


all registered architects were to be enrolled onto

robbrecht en daem exhibition

pacing through architecture

robbrecht en daam exhibition


robbrecht en daam exhibition


Procuring Architecture  

Report on the Flemish/South African workshop on Architectural procurement held at Wits University on March 24 2011.

Procuring Architecture  

Report on the Flemish/South African workshop on Architectural procurement held at Wits University on March 24 2011.