Marx arkitektur works with a pre-study with the aim to accomplish a cultural center in Cape Town, South Africa. The client Soundz
Of the South (SOS) visited Stockholm in August 2017. The preparations for the project startup have been running low flame but steady
until recently when Marx Arkitektur and the Swedish cultural center Cyklopen achieved money from IASPIS for a first trip down to
the site in Cape Town during November 2018.
The ame with the trip was to understand the context of the project. Fieldtrips, mapping workshops, discussions and
meetings with local culture- and democracy projects took place. The material from the trip is being processed and complemented
in order to become architectural program with high ambition. In addition to this it serves as a documentation of the project
that might come in handy for later publications, applications, reports etc. The documentation is still a work in progress
and therefore, not public jet.
In March 2019 SOS will come to Stockholm financed by ABF international to continue the work and prepare for a bigger conference
organized in Stockholm early June 2019 between Marx arkitektur, Cyklopen and SOS. The conference is aiming to broaden the
projects understanding of their own work and take Mkhululi Freedom Station to the next step in the process, physical realization.
The area where the cultural center is planned is described below by SOS:
“Khayelitsha is a township in Western Cape, South Africa, located on the Cape Flats in the City of Cape Town. It
is the largest and fastest growing township in South Africa. Originally, it was established as an “apartheid dumping
ground” in the mid 80’s as a part of the “Group Areas Act”. In the last ten years the population has risen from
400,000 to 2.4 million, 50% of which are under 19 years of age. Unemployment rate is 73%, with 70% living in shacks.
89% of homes are considered moderately to severely food insecure. The extreme poverty, coupled with poor community
infrastructure, lead to immense crime rates, gangs, violence, drugs as well as other societal ills.
These challenges, while experienced by everyone, are perhaps most harshly felt by young people. Unemployment and
limited access to quality education further exasperate these dismal conditions. SOS works within this context, a
product of historical oppression, continued injustice and marginalization. “ SOS
The project summary:
“The Centre is an open, safe and empowering space to be founded by a collective of community activists, hiphop
artist and creative social entreprenuers, providing a unique alternative social, pedagogical and organising experience
for members of the wider Khayelitsha community. The Centre is modelled after Cyklopen in Stockholm, Sweden and various
European social centres, but also recalling the importance of the Bantu Men's Social Centre, an anti-apartheid mainstay
Bringing together diverse groups that focus on art, skills development, popular education, and community organising,
the Centre will be a cooperatively run space which refuses to privilege any individual but rather seeks to build
consensus amongst its members in moving the project forward.
With the goal of becoming one of the first community-run social spaces in the Cape Flats, the Centre will be a safe space
for people of diverse backgrounds who seek to engage with and involve thousands of locals and people from all over the
Cape Town townships.“ SOS