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CEMS Original Design for Main Atrium
CEMS Original Design for Secondary A
CEMS Master Plan
CEMS South Elevation
CEMS SouthWest Terrace
CEMS Western Approach
CEMS Main Atrium Canteen
CEMS Main Atrium
CEMS Office Fabric
CEMS North Elevation

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25 000m² College for Economic & Business Sciences Building, University of South Africa, Pretoria
Sr Design Architect                      
2011 to 2013 


Responsibilities and Duties Performed: 

  • Prepared the original competition design and Managed the Bid Documentation preparation

  • Developed the refined Brief with the Client and end users

  • Prepared the Developed Design, based on the refined Brief, for Management Committee approval

  • Prepared numerous documents for remote presentation to the Financial Committee and the Minister of Higher Education for approval

  • With the Project Architect, developed detailed design with the TC Technical Team, and commenced initial services coordination with the Professional Team.

“TSELA YA TSHEBO” (the journey of acquiring knowledge) served as the most fundamental conceptual generator of the design. Innovative knowledge transfer, the provision of an environment that supports knowledge development (research) and almost effortless access to information are essential qualities of the building. Education is no longer a simple linear transfer of information between academics, and academics and students. The energy of unique intervention diverts the line, sending it on an extraordinary path.

Macro to Micro
Aesthetically the new building will be a continuation and contemporary interpretation of the already iconic Sandrock designed campus. Great care was taken to preserve the “elegant line”, campus proportioning strategy, and material/colour application. The original buff glazed tile on precast concrete panels and steel frame clear glass ribbon window become ivory ventilated porcelain tile and suspended fritted glass shading devices over performance flush glazed curtain facades. The existing campus consists of  two elongated rows of building, following the hillside contour, enclosing a vast parking court. The same model is applied in miniature, now enclosing the open CEMS Piazza, followed by the CEMS Main Atrium. The original path therefore concludes in the new building, and offers vastly improved opportunity for coincidental interaction.
United Identity
Though in essence an administration building, the new CEMS offers an opportunity to unify faculty members that traditionally work in isolation. The main  atrium becomes the symbolic heart of the college, a mass gathering space with direct access to shared facilities. The smaller secondary atria provide identity centres to each school.

Adaptable Space
Flexibility is a key feature of the building, not only accommodating the ever adapting structures of the college, but also the ever developing nature of education. The result is research spaces that encourages innovative application, and articulated office spaces 

TC TEAM: Mark Pencharz (Director); Chapman Leijenaar (Design Architect), pW Hatting (Project Architect);  Ivan Elliot & Massi Braghini (technicians) Warren de Bruyn (modelling & graphics)
PROFESSIONAL TEAM: AECOM (structural, electrical, mechanical & hydraulic); PJC (sustainable design); GreenInc (landscape)

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