Exploring solar energy design systems in peri-urban settlements for responsive architecture: towards the design of a multipurpose upcycling skills centre in Cato Manor.
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Presently, cities are faced with escalating global economic and social challenges in peri-urban settlements. Despite the severity of these challenges, there remains an urgent need to incorporate sustainable development approaches within urban and peri-urban municipal structural model. Together with environmental concerns, sustainable development approaches also need to include strategies to improve socio-economic issues. South African cities have inherited the burden of the apartheid city dominance, as seen by the continued urban and spatial segregation. Since the South African post-apartheid governance, the current approaches implemented towards urban and periurban development have only aggravated the issues leading to the inefficiency of modern South African cities. Within the context of the urban fabric, cities are filled with numerous socioeconomic inequalities which prevent the accessibility of basics services for marginalized communities. This is most prevalent in peri-urban areas. This dissertation investigates the possibility of creating an architectural model for developing a solar energy harvested upcycling centre which can contribute to the concept of Liveable Urbanism and ultimately empower insurgent communities to resolving their energy crises, and addressing the various socio-economic and waste pollution challenges they face. Sustainable development is the primary strategy towards Liveable Urbanism, where it is understood as a process which involves leading a society on a development pathway that is social, economic and environmentally sustainable for self-sustenance. This dissertation will further examine how the specific socioeconomic factors shape the vulnerability of the context in the Cato Manor District as an example of a peri-urban area faced with these modern socio-economic challenges. The theoretical framework of “Sustainable Development” will justify the concept of Liveable Urbanism and will include a literature research to highlight the current socio-economic challenges within these disadvantaged communities.