OURS was commissioned by locally based developer called Empire Earth to convert a factory into student accommodation in Saltriver, Cape Town. The commission was given in 2019, with a 5 month program in preparation for the 2020 academic year. The building that was set to accommodate 56 students is now known as Student Republic.
For the project we worked with Inscape students from Saltriver campus, who were the primary target market. They comprised interior, architecture, fashion and photography students working across disciplines as part of the CROSS CLASS program.
The mission was to create a product designed by students for students. We used sustainable products such as the Green Lite Concrete Blocks which cut our construction time in half. This was intentional because at OURS we believe that reducing our carbon footprint is a vital part of grooming responsible and conscious professionals. Beyond reducing your carbon footprint, using sustainable building materials adds resale value to a property. Aside from the obvious benefits of high-quality, low maintenance, and exceptional durability, a home built with sustainable materials is an increasingly desirable asset. In the modern era, sustainability is the standard.
The scope of the project covered architecture, interior and web design, brand development, logo design, and creating digital and physical marketing material. In the true nature of the Cross Class program, students were able to interact and collaborate with other students in various disciplines. This was a great learning experience as students gained practical and site experience working on a real project; with a real client and working across the design disciples.
“I loved working with the OURS team because they were really open to my ideas even though I was a student. They really took my passions into consideration and tailored the internship around them. I also learnt quite a few life skills from being around this diverse group of young people. I also enjoyed working and collaborating with different people from different disciplines.” Kutwalo Architecture Intern 2018-19
A very important aspect of the Cross Class program was creating an environment that nurtures the confidence and creativity of the students. It is very important to show them how their creativity can be used to solve real life problems such as the student accommodation crisis in Cape Town at the time. They were able to take part in designing a building that suited their specific needs. This not only gave them practical experience that gives them an edge in the job market but it also makes them invaluable members of the different organizations that they will work for in the future.