Another win for Cape Town – alongside its recent successful World Design Capital 2014 bid – is its selection as the city to receive the fifth Deutsche Bank Urban Age Award.
The Urban Age Award recognises and celebrates creative solutions to problems and opportunities that face more than half the world’s population now living in cities. The award focuses on projects that benefit communities and local residents by improving their urban environments. It seeks to encourage citizens, policy-makers, private business and non-governmental organisations to take a proactive role in adopting shared responsibilities for the cities of the 21st century – mankind’s first truly ‘urban’ age.
In 2007, the award was presented jointly to two projects in Mumbai; in 2008 to a project in São Paulo; in 2009 it travelled to Istanbul and most recently to Mexico City in 2010. The award is associated with the Urban Age project, a worldwide investigation into the future of cities jointly initiated by Deutsche Bank’s Alfred Herrhausen Society and LSE Cities at the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Speaking at the launch of the award in Cape Town at the end of November last year, Wolfgang Nowak, managing director of the Alfred Herrhausen Society said, “Governing a city means managing contradictions. The Deutsche Bank Urban Age Award aims to encourage people to overcome contradictions and work together to take responsibility for their cities.
“The Urban Age Award aims to uncover the invisible and the unseen. It is about making citizens aware that they can be the change they want and it is about showcasing Cape Town as a city that is trying to overcome urban challenges positively.”
Entries for the award, which is worth R750 000, are now open until 24 February. Any projects based in the Cape Town metropolitan area that meet the criterion of benefitting urban communities and local residents by improving their urban environments may be submitted.
Submissions are judged on a project basis, which means organisations may enter multiple projects for consideration. Application forms are available online and via local libraries and community centres. In order to be considered for the award entrants need to submit an entry form together with a two-page project description and references.
The award will be judged by an independent jury of international and local members from a mix of disciplines. The three international jury members are Professor Ricky Burdett, director of LSE Cities, the former Mayor of Washington D.C. Tony Williams, and architect Enrique Norten (TEN Arquitectos, Mexico/NY). The jury is chaired by Edgar Pieterse, director of the African Centre for Cities at UCT, and the local jury members are Nomfundo Walaza, CEO of the Desmond Tutu Peace Centre, poet, playwright and performer Malika Ndlovu, and CEO of the Cape Town Partnership, Andrew Boraine.
The fifth Deutsche Bank Urban Age Award will be presented on 19 April 2012 in Cape Town.