10×10 Housing Project by Tom Dixon, Shigeru Ban, David Adjaye etc


Design Indaba 08: here are images of housing designs by teams including Tom Dixon, Shigeru Ban, David Adjaye, Thomas Heatherwick And Klein Dytham for Design Indaba's 10x10 Housing Project at Freedom Park in Cape Town, South Africa.

Top image: Silvio Rech & Lesley Carstens (Johannesburg). See a video of this project on YouTube. Above: Mark Dytham (Tokyo) and Ruben Reddy (Durban). The designs are the result of collaborations between local and international architects and aim to provide family homes for a budget of just 65,000 Rand (£4,300/$8,600).

Above: Andrew Makin & Janina Masojada (Durban) with Christophe Egret & David West (London).

Above: David Adjaye (London)

Above: Don Albert (Cape Town) with Tom Dixon (London)

Above: Luyanda Mpahlwa (Cape Town). Mpahlwa's design, which is constructed of sand bags, is the first on site. More info and photos of this project in our earlier stories.

Above: Cameron Sinclair (San Francisco)

Above: Eva Jiricna (London)

Above: Henning Rassmus (Johannesburg)

Above: Jo Noero (Cape Town)

Above: Martin Kruger (South Africa)

Above: Shigeru Ban (Japan)

Above: Thomas Heatherwick (London). See a video of this design on YouTube.

Above: Stefan Antoni (Cape Town)

Above: Will Alsop (London)

Above: Vanessa September (Cape Town) and Lindy Roy (New York)

The following information is from Design Indaba:


Design Indaba is an annual conference which gathers the world’s brightest talent from across the creative industries. We have become a broad church for the graphic design, advertising, architecture, film, music, fashion design, industrial design, craft, visual art, new media and publishing sectors. The institution, which incorporates events, media, education, training and business development, is well-established with a 12-year history.

The Design Indaba Conference held in February 2007 hosted 2,600 delegates. The Design Indaba Expo runs alongside the Conference, and showcases the best of contemporary South African creativity. The Design Indaba Expo held in February 2007 hosted over 240 exhibitors and 20 000 visitors.

In order to promote the design industries in South Africa and to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Design Indaba, some spin-off projects have been launched to encapsulate the best of design in a unique project setting. These projects will be known collectively as Design Indaba 10 x 10’s and bring together Design Indaba alumni to create a brand image for others to benefit from.

Design Indaba 10x10 Housing Project: A Design Indaba Community ProjectLow-cost housing is an issue of huge social relevance in South Africa, and indeed globally. A significant global statistic is that this year, for the first time, 50% of the World’s population will reside in urban areas. The impact of this is particularly visible in the townships of South Africa. A number of national initiatives have been given a high profile by LN Sisulu, South Africa’s Minister of Housing. The Minister has stated the government’s position and encouraged developers, financial institutions and the construction industry to deliver on the visions and goals of the National Housing Policy.

The 10 x 10 Housing Project challenged 10 architectural teams to provide innovative and dynamic design solutions for the low cost housing sector (on a completely pro-bono basis). Each team consists of a South African architect working alongside an international architect, to create 10 distinct designs to change the perception that low-cost housing is outside the realms of design innovation and architectural significance. This challenge will culminate in the construction of 10 houses, and the production of a “users” manual, which will be presented to the Minister of Housing, and will provide open-source prototypes for the future.

The houses will be built in Freedom Park in Mitchell’s Plain, and given to 10 families in need. This will truly “create a better future, by design” for ten of Cape Town’s most impoverished families. We have secured a sponsor in PG Bison, who will pay for the cost of building the houses.

The brief to the architects specifies designing a house of at least 42 m2 with a budget of R50 000, in order to fall within the parameters of a current RDP house. Due to the 30% inflation in the local building industry over the duration of the project we were forced to concede in an increase in budget.

Freedom Park

Freedom Park is situated in Mitchell’s Plain, about 40 km from Cape Town city centre. We have been allocated 10 plots in the greater Freedom Park development on which to build the 10 Design Indaba houses. We are working closely with the Freedom Park Development Association (FPDA), the Development Action Group (DAG), and Niall Mellon Township Trust (NMTT) who are all involved in the building of a total of 493 low-cost houses in Freedom Park.

The allocation of the houses took place in mid-June 2007, in the form of a lucky draw audited by KPMG. Eligible (and willing) families from the Freedom Park Development entered the draw and on a cold, wintry Cape morning 10 names were drawn by members of our team, the Freedom Park community and partners. The families have also been workshopped to explain the project and its objectives.

Posted on Tuesday March 4th 2008 at 3:35 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Sorry…had to say… that house at the top looks a lot like it’s about to trap that poor old chap walking up to it.

    Actually…. it looks a lot like this:


    sorry Roger…



  • kumakuma

    Dytham/Reddy. That one.

  • Nuno

    O’RLY? That soooooo boring :/

  • Arch

    the top most pic reminds me of mvrdv’s new orleans.

    i like shigeru’s. serene. japanese quality serene.

    alsop’s is so ‘alsop-like’. kinda reminds me of ‘ze plasma studio style’

    third one from the top. i love your rendering style. nice.

    why not show floor plans?

  • brian

    Dont you think that Don Albert and Tom Dixon has a lot of racial profiling
    in that image. what a insult!
    [5th from the top]

  • F

    I vote Mark Dytham.

  • achille

    Brian, do you even know what the term ‘racial profiling’ means? Perhaps you mean it’s racist to assume that low income housing in South Africa will be inhabited by Africans, rather than white South Africans? If this is the case, I would advise that you look into the demographics.

  • Guy

    Here is the more updated submission by Silvio Rech and Thomas Heatherwick. The one sampled above was the initial Design by Silvio Rech.
    See the youtube link for the design process animation video


  • ant

    Most of these designs are not innovative – I get the impression that most are cobbled together either quickly or from past efforts.

    Social housing requires an exploration of models of efficiency, multi-functionality, urban design and construction methods to name a few. Above I see very little exploration.

    As a South African I am embarrassed by our local efforts – Vanessa September’s proposal appears simplistic and inefficient and on the other extreme Stefan Antoni’s appears as if its attempting to appeal to a wealthy European market. This project was an incredible opportunity to showcase our design talent with regard to dealing with real-world design problems (think Architecture for Humanity) . The level of presentation is indicative of the lack of effort that has met the project brief (e.g OMM’s inability to grasp perspective).

    Please – if you don’t want the opportunity participate give it to those that would love it!

  • There are some really great designs there.

  • I am very interested in knowing when will the next expo be.
    I have some ideas and a prospective design which will be outstanding for the South African market.
    I intend setting up the manufacture in S.A. regions with BEM and I will need Local Banks or goverment funding for the project.
    All I would want is a small Royalty in return.

  • Andy Briley

    I have worked in the social housing sector in SA for over ten-years and I am still surprised at the designs produced by architects for the provision of affordable housing.
    Why is it that those who are unable to access housing must become test projects for the unusual.
    The purpose of integrated communities needs to be in the design of the unit and how it meets the needs of the end-user and also the surrounding developments and how it blends with other forms of housing.
    To ensure that social housing does not become a visual definition, it should be undertaken in the same way as normal family housing.
    I accept that the design of property is organic, however do not over design for sake of design.

  • Nic

    All designs without exception show a radical level of self expression rather than an attempt to produce meaningful low cost housing . This was not a contest on style and direction , in fact September’s design did not even have this !

    How sad and embarrassing for us south african architects to have witnessed such vulgarity.