The revival of heritage and culture in the creation of new urban space : a proposed museum in Port Shepstone.
Heritage and culture are invaluable assets whereby human beings can define themselves. Through the careful preservation of past and heritage, people have a reference point in which to define their belonging; a lineage that traces their being. However, heritage and the elements that make up a place's identity are often not preserved. The question posed in this dissertation asks what becomes of a space when it's particular heritage and history falls into a state of decay? Why is it necessary to try to preserve the elements that define the very foundations of a place? Furthermore, it is asked what can be done, in terms of an architectural intervention, to rectify this issue. Architecture has a role far beyond the necessity of basic shelter. It defines a framework in which human activity occurs. It encompasses something greater than the functional and its vast impact on the physical, emotional and psychological aspects of its users should not be overlooked; especially when the architecture has a way of harking back to a past memory and time. This dissertation looks into an appropriate response to architectural design that merges the significance of the past, the inherent culture of a collective society, the defining characteristics of place, setting and climatic elements and built form that captures the essence in an architectural celebration. The research culminates in an analysis of a revival and rejuvenation approach to architecture in the local context of KwaZulu-Natal. Conclusions are drawn from the research carried out through conducting interviews, a review of literature and analysis of case studies and precedent studies. The outcome of this dissertation is a set of recommendations, principles and an understanding of the criteria necessary to inform the design of A Proposed New Museum in Port Shepstone. There is nothing better than that a man should rejoice in his own works, for that is his heritage - Ecclesiastes 3:22