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Saturday, December 3, 2011


Coinciding with the start of COP17/CMP7 was the opening of the exhibition Repurpose, a creative exhibition of architecture without borders at The Priority Zone, 77b Monty Naicker Street.

Repurpose is across the way from the International Convention Centre (ICC), the official venue of COP17 and runs until December 15. The four exhibitions-in-one will be showcased in the headquarters of the Priority Zone Pilot Project, a working green building conversion that boasts a roof vegetable garden, sustainable water management and renewable energy.

The exhibitions span two countries and are about the effects of architecture in public spaces. In keeping with the principles espoused by COP17, this is responsible and compassionate architecture that goes way beyond just buildings. It is architecture that changes behaviour and gives hope.

It is architecture that reworks what exists and gives it new purpose. A process that is respectful, sustainable and optimistic. A positive act, invested with meaning, that leads to proud housing, food and job security, and, most importantly, personal security.

The São Paulo, Priority Zone, City Architects and The Union Internationale des Architectes (UIA) exhibitions all deal on varying levels with repurposing space and buildings and, through that, making a tangible difference to the people engaging or re-engaging within that space, and changing perceptions of that space. They are all positive interventions that lead to behavioural changes.

This international cross-cultural exhibition documents the quest for sustainable and high quality living environments in dense inner cities. Everything used to build this show is reusable.

Repurpose runs at The Priority Zone, 77b Monty Naicker Street until December 15 and is open daily from 09h00 to 21h00. Entrance is free and refreshments are available to purchase. For more information, contact Wendy Gibson-Taylor or Thobile Mkhize on 031 368 2599 or e-mail or