Open House Cape Town
For the first time in South Africa, to coincide with
Cape Town’s designation as World
Design Capital 2014, Cape Town will host the
International event ‘Open House’.
Created in London in 1992, it is guided by
a straightforward but inspiring principle: to
showcase the hidden wealth of architecture to
the general public, stirring an interest for urban
built heritage and innovation.
‘Open House’ is a simple but powerful concept:
showcasing outstanding architecture for all to
experience, completely for free. Open House
initiatives invite everyone to explore and
understand the value of a well-designed built
environment and offers a unique avenue for the
public to engage with their city.
Open House is an annual not-for-profit event that
was started by Victoria Thornton in London exactly
21 years ago. It now includes almost 20 cities
across the globe.
Of Cape Town
Open House Cape Town will be based on the Open
House Worldwide model, and will be tailored to suit
Cape Town’s unique and hybrid urban character.
It will provide a platform for a wide range
of participants, from architects, designers,
homeowners, students, artists, futurists, urban-
innovators, self-builders, city enthusiasts and
the general public to engage with and showcase
their city’s built environment, however formal or
For Cape Town
Open House Cape Town will see up to 50 buildings
and spaces open for the public to visit free of
charge. There will be lectures, debates, open
studios, guided-tours, and city walks given by a
range of architects and urban enthusiasts.
Open House Cape Town and associated events
will run over weekend in 2014. Staffed largely by
architects, home-owners, students, young design
and architecture graduates and volunteers, all
Open House events and building access will be for
free inspiring a huge amount of involvement and
inclusivity and creating a lasting and growing legacy
event. Involvement in the event will aim to educate
and provide further opportunities for the following
African Innovation: Global Conversation
Buildings, spaces and locations that showcase
ingenuity, and excellence in the following
categories will be chosen:-
- Architectural design
- Heritage Value
- Future thinking
- Informal innovation
- Design process
- Social contribution
- Urban innovation
- Technical innovation
- Spatial innovation
Cape Town interactive
For the inaugural event, locations are expected to
be CBD-centric, with an aim for the event to grow
in the following years to encompass all of Cape
Town. In 2014, with a hub in the city, and guided-
tours to feature parts of the townships, the focus
will be on inclusion and accessibility for all.
Interactive maps will be set up and presented on
the Open House Cape Town website.
A free downloadable app could be developed to
transfer district guides and interactive maps to
The inclusive city
Open House Cape Town is centered around the
concept of inclusivity at all levels. Open calls for
participation will be put out, and volunteers will be
sourced from a range of schools and universities.
Social media and wide reaching marketing
campaigns will aim to engage all aspects of the
greater public. Events will be free and centered
around accessible areas of Cape Town
“One of my favourite events of the year, Open
House offers the unparalleled opportunity to step
inside the capital’s most interesting buildings.
The vast selection of buildings on offer span from
the intimate to the paramount. This is a first class
education in architecture, and it’s free.”
Christine Murray, Editor, Architects’ Journal on Open House London
Team : Justine Bell, Architect, Curator
Justine Bell is a practising architect, photographer
and curator. South African born, she has travelled
to work, live and study. She has worked with
award-winning and internationally recognized
practices including John Pawson, and Carmody
Justine has visited and volunteered in many Open
House events worldwide, it has been her vision
to curate and present her cities vast wealth in
building and urban assets as an inclusive and
socially engaged African version of the Open House
Team : Rashiq Fataar, Future Cape Town
Rashiq Fataar is an urbanist with expertise in
social media and public engagement. In 2010 he
founded the incredibly successful not for profit
urban think-tank Future Cape Town, and Future
Cities Consultants. Since then he has delivered a
range of engaging and participatory urban initiates
as well as the Future Cape Town media platform
through which he has developed large local and
Team: Andrew Scott, Building Designer
Andrew is a sustainable building designer and
passionate ‘green’ advocate. Having recently
returned to Cape Town after working in Australia
for the past six years, he is currently working on a
number of key building projects across the country.
While in Australia Andrew worked on a number
of iconic urban developments in both a design
and project management capacity. Andrew has
actively participated in Open House Melbourne for
a number of years and is excited about introducing
this concept to Cape Town.
Funding will be based on co-sponsorship sourced
through a variety of public and private sectors.
Future Cape Town and the rest of the Open House
Cape Town team are currently in the process of
engaging with potential sponsors and determining
Funding will be required predominantly for
marketing and administration. This event is
strictly not-for-profit and will rely on a network
of volunteers for staffing, events and locations,
in exchange for training, or marketing and
involvement in this international event.
Funding and sponsorship
Management and Operations
The organizing committee will benefit from the vast
knowledge base of Open House Worldwide that
has helped to develop over 15 Open House cities
across the world.
Along with the existing team network and expertise
offered by Future Cape Town, Justine and Andrew,
a robust operations plan will be developed in
cooperation with key local partnerships and
affected parties. This will include such elements
as logistics, transport, communications, security,
emergency procedures, etc.
Open House Cape Town will draw on the
vast international network of the Open House
Worldwide network, as well as the strong local
network and online social media presence and
expertise of Future Cape Town.
Open House Cape Town will have its own unique
identity that draws on its own place and culture.
Young marketing experts will be employed to
create an identity and a simple and clear online and
physical media presence.
Active and inclusive targeted marketing will reach
those that may have less chance of seeing on-line
and print media campaigns.
Marketing and Publicity