A critical analysis of how Independent Power Producers (IPP’s) can help to secure a sustainable future for post-mining towns in South Africa through new models of architectural practices, to promote the renewal of architecture as a means of creating new realities and being drivers of sustainable change
Harrison, Peter Carleton
This thesis aims to understand the role that Independent Power Producers (IPP’s) can play in the renewal of architectural firms in creating new realities and how these firms can once again become drivers of social change. Kathu (Northern Cape), a steel mining town, is facing the reality that it will have to survive without a mining house and the community funding that results from its operations soon. There are three IPP’s within a 50km radius of Kathu. Under the current funding structure all 3 IPP’s have to contribute to socio-economic development (SED) and enterprise development (ED) within Kathu. According to the Independent Power Producers Procurement Programme (IPPP’s), IPP’s are required to provide 1% of gross turnover to community funds for SED and ED development programmes. Where this funding differs from funding obtained from mining houses is that renewable energy is effectively limitless. Despite IPP’s having a projected lifespan of 20 years they will continue to be redeveloped and upgraded. These upgrades will allow for longevity of revenue, which in turn allows for sustained support for the communities surrounding them. Funding structures that are being used to disseminate mining house funds to the communities are suffering from governance issues. This means that the communities do not receive the most effective or necessary forms of development. Through a new typology of architectural practice, the way these funds are managed and utilised can create better environments for those communities. This new typology of architectural firm must move away from the corporate and profit driven nature of modern architectural firms and more towards a ‘Rural Studio’ model. This is where the primary focus is on the community and how to best serve the needs of the people. In doing so SED projects would be more effective in bringing about social change, creating new realities for communities and drivers of sustainability in post-mining towns in South Africa.
Thesis is submitted in partial fulfilment for the degree of Master of Architecture to the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment, School of Architecture and Planning at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, 2018
Harrison, Peter Carleton (2018) A critical analysis of how Independent Power Producers (IPP’s) can help to secure a sustainable future for post-mining towns in South Africa through new models of architectural practices, to promote the renewal of architecture as a means of creating new realities and being drivers of sustainable change, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, <http://hdl.handle.net/10539/26514>