In November 2011, LHA+UD was appointed by the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) as part of a New Universities Project Management Team (PMT) to take forward a planning process for the development of a New University in the Northern Cape.
The project management team was tasked with the development of a comprehensive Implementation Strategy Plan, which describes the nature, scale, academic content, institutional framework and spatial requirements of the New University.
The New Universities Project Management Team has explored a range of issues relevant to the selection of the best sites for the new University. These include: understanding the nature, scale and possible academic content of the institution; establishing a framework of selection criteria; defining the essential qualities of the host town and of the optimum site and establishing a framework that supports objective decision making.
The brief called for the articulation of a Design and Development Framework for the Sol Plaatje University.
The Spatial Development Framework aims to:
Be sensitive to the needs of the city and ensure proper integration
Establish appropriate links to the city and surrounds
Ensure proper access for students and visitors via public transport
Create a pedestrian friendly campus environment
Improve existing public amenities and strengthen partnerships with the introduction of new facilities
Assist with the urban regeneration of Kimberley
Be thoughtful in its architectural expression
Create an architectural language that is of its place
'The plan for the university is to become the plan of the city, and the plan of the city is the plan of the university'