Blue Nile Campus UniverCity of Bahir Dar wins 3rd price

UNIVERcITY has been awarded third price in the International Competition for the Conceptual Master Plan Design for the Bahir Dar University in Ethiopia. This master plan covers an area of over 500 ha consisting of 7 campuses with a total of 350.000 m2 of facilities, a cultural heritage centre of 20.000 m2 and student and staff accommodations of a total gross floor area of 200.000 m2.

UNIVERcITY is the entry by DASUDA and INLabs design, in collaboration with LIAG.

The principle of our entry is ‘integration of University and City’. The University Campus of the future is the city itself. In the city science, talent and prosperity are all blooming in an urban environment where people interact, share and compete. Businesses all over the world are looking for these environments. Therefore a large University campus is preferably not only a collection of facilities by itself, but becomes an open place, with extravert relations to its surrounding environment and act with that open attitude to the world. The master plan for the Bahir Dar University was designed in correlation with the existing qualities of the site like the outstanding natural beauty of both Tana Lake and the Blue Nile River in the direct proximity, the excellent vegetation conditions on site and direct access to the main infrastructure and potential links with the neighbouring city centre. The integral concept connects river landscape, university, and the city.

The first framework to strive to integration is a series of Axes, based on some main existing roads, along which most developments are centralized and with a new north-south Boulevard as heart line through all campuses. The second framework is a grid pattern of 150 x 150 meter over the entire area. This grid can accommodate University program, general campus and more generic urban development and covers a large area of which a part will have new green programs for agriculture, scientific test fields, ecology, parks and recreation. The grid is flexible and can facilitate any future development and still have a well organized area at all time. It is not treated rigid, existing valuable buildings, public and nmt transport, routes and structures can be incorporated and adjust the grid specifically.

Along the Axes and boulevard the quality of public space is emphasized to cater for urban life. The connection with the Blue Nile river shore is a main aim to strengthen the landscape identity. The UNIVERcITY concept proposes to link all shores and wetlands. In conjunction with the existing green areas a greenbelt around the City centre can be defined, which offers great public qualities at all sides of the City and also clearly defines the University being part of the City centre of Bahir Dar. Special attention have been given to relate buildings to their environment by creating natural ventilation, outdoor teaching spaces under canopies and using water and planting for natural cooling, wetlands for natural water purification and plant valuable indigenous trees and plants. A special place is created to strengthen the identity of the Bahir Dar University with the Cultural Island housing the new Heritage and Cultural Centre right at the spring of the Blue Nile river.

KALOLENI the heart of Nairobi

A case study of moving towards Inclusive Urbanism

The Eastlands estates are several neighborhoods of colonial-era housing in the east of Nairobi, built by the British colonial government between the 1920s and 1960s to provide affordable housing for Africans in Kenya’s rapidly growing capital city. Although today they are dilapidated and in disrepair, tens of thousands of Nairobians still call them home.

One of the targeted estates, Kaloleni, is the focus of our Inclusive Urbanism project where we have been exploring stakeholder and residents’ responses to this looming threat of redevelopment while demonstrating a participatory and integrated approach to urban planning and regeneration with the objective of showcasing a viable business case for affordable housing.

The Kaloleni project aims to provide professionals, students and residents engaged in urban planning and development with the critical tools to design and manage an integrated provision of both housing and urban systems.

Its goals are premised on the lack of scalar integration and participatory planning in the implementation of large-scale and capital-intensive urban regeneration projects in Kenya. Indeed, the implementation in the context of rapid growth, lack of proper regulation and management, consolidated self-building practices and increasing inequality holds innumerable threats to equitable urban development.

Co-producing inclusive urbanism for sustainable city transformation is therefore an essential skill for engendering meaningful social and physical change.

For the Kaloleni project DASUDA is working with: Nairobi City County, University of Nairobi, KERA (Kaloleni Estate Residence Association), University of Groningen (MA Pauline Bezemer).




Integral Urban Design in Cape Town

The Wingfield Case as example towards inclusive urbanism 

The DASUDA team, in conjunction with Frank Cumming (Regenco) and Greater Tygerberg Partnership, has demonstrated an integrated approach with new digital tools on water and traffic, with a potential high impact on the the biggest challenges Cape Town is facing concerning flooding, traffic, low employment and social exclusion.

The location of the case study was the former military airbase of Wingfield, situated between Voortrekkerroad and the N1 in Cape Town. This vast 225 ha space is derelict for a long time and an example of the many unused spaces within the metropolis.

One of the tools DASUDA is using is the 3Di water showing con­sequences of severe rainfall on the site. Based on big data a real time calculation shows the exact situation of flooding on site. Outcome is directly used by the design team to alter various models incorporated in an overall spatial design to solve the problem. For the Wingfield site it resulted in the proposal to locate a water catchment in the centre of the area. In combination with green surrounding and connections to especially the Elsieskraal river south of the location led to options of integral solution and identity of what Wingfield could be.

On the topic of traffic the MOVE Meter simula­tion model helps to test what could possibly be alternatives for the daily infarct of the cities’ infrastructure by all those cars moving daily across the wide spread low density urban fabric of Cape Town by people seeking amenities and work that is not located in the proximity of their house.

With testing various mixed densities on Wingfield we are able to raise the density with a factor 10 compared to the neighbouring areas. Meaning that 20,000 new units can be realized instead of the typical area development of 2,000 in an urban environment which enables more amenities, social and commercial functions and mixed income groups, realizing better liveability conditions.



Tyger Design Lab

The Greater Tygerberg Partnership (GTP) and the Dutch Alliance for Sustainable Urban Development in Africa (DASUDA) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to initiate the Tyger Design Lab.

The GTP has signed the first of many international partnership agreements. Collaborating with DASUDA in starting up the Tyger Design Lab, which will be located within the Voortrekker Road Corridor. The Lab will also serve as a public meeting point, information centre with communal facilities together with office space for the core team.

The GTP is tasked with the regeneration of the Greater Tygerberg region and specifically to focus initially on the Voortrekker Road Corridor and Bellville Central Areas. DASUDA is a Dutch Foundation and urban solutions platform that promotes integral urban development in Africa, based on Dutch knowledge and experience in urban sustainability. DASUDA offers specific knowledge and expertise from its Dutch and local partner companies promoting an integrated, holistic and multidisciplinary approach to sustainable urban development and design.

“The Tyger Design Lab will be a place where we can plan, create, disseminate and oversee the implementation of innovative ideas, plans and projects in the Voortrekker Road Corridor, Greater Tygerberg and Belleville region,” says Robert van Kats of DASUDA.

The Lab will be used for the preparation of concept designs, master plans, urban design frameworks for major strategic land development sites, district and precinct regeneration plans and thematic design areas including transit malls, station redevelopments, open space systems and design guidelines for building and public space development, amongst others.

“Design is being seen as a tool to test, integrate and leverage the development programs in the Voortrekker Road Corridor and Bellville Central and to inspire and engage all possible partners in the regeneration task for the coming years,” says Lindsey Jones, COO of the GTP. “We hope that this exciting partnership will take the themes and projects in the Regeneration Framework into its next phase. Jointly and collectively we can stimulate urban regeneration and facilitate local social and economic development,” says Lindsey.

For more information about the GTP and DASUDA, please visit and

DASUDA Seminar in Nairobi

After the seminar on the 29th of October 2013 partnerships were established to collaborate on case study projects as first steps towards urban liveable cities, to start with the city of Nairobi.

Letters of Intent are signed with the State of the Netherlands, represented by the Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation of The Netherlands and the Ambassador of the Netherlands, University of Nairobi, School of the Build Environment UoN, represented by the Dean, DASUDA, represented by its Chairman and Kenya Liaison, and Nairobi County Government, represented by the Governor End Deputy Governor of Nairobi.

The focus areas within the city are defined together with the University of Nairobi and the the planning department of Nairobi County. We appreciated all very pleasant and successful meetings with all participating partners and further engagements on collaborating. We like to thank all who have participated in the seminar ‘learning from Nairobi’. See you soon again in Nairobi.