Kindergarten Project inaugurated in South Africa

Hamlet Creche

The Kindergarten ?Oppie Koppie Creche? was opened in a South African township in December. Architecture students from the Faculty of Architecture of the RWTH University have built the facility together with local volunteers in only 60 days. The company Henkel supported the project as a partner. Thus, a facility for about 80 children was created in the economically underdeveloped region north of Cape Town.

The facility ?Oppie Koppie Creche?, Afrikaans (Cape Dutch) for ? Kindergarten on the hill?, is the first Kindergarten in the Township of Prince Alfred?s Hamlet, about 100 kilometers north of Cape Town. The Township is among the poorest in the region. 30 students have designed, planned and built the Kindergarten on their own. First plans and models for the nonprofit project were developed in 2009. In the spring of 2010, the students flew to South Africa at their own expenses to work on-site hand in hand with the South African community.

Since 2006, the Department of Building Typologies and the Department of Structures and Structural Design of the RWTH University have offered courses that integrate the practical experience of realizing concrete building projects for aid projects in South Africa with university education. From the first draft to the development of models, final plans and 1:1 mock-ups and on to final realization the students pass through all phases of a construction project within a year; including - next to final planning and bill of quantities - also scheduling, financing and cost control.

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