schap MZAMBA ´16

Design-build project with students of the Carinthia University of Applied Science, Ithuba Wild Coast School, local team of parents, neighbours and craftsmen.

The consultation and working framework with various stakeholders and partners – NGO, client, university, local management and user is followed by the investigation of climatic, social and economic assets and set up of design-brief for students.


The project had been guided by the wish of clients for a classroom unit for Grade 5,6,7 learners as well as multifunctional teachers room. In the design process the team decided on a 2-step plan of construction and the focus on fast implementation with local material and skilled team. Several design proposals were investigated in smaller teams and later joint according to feasibility, spatial qualities and collaborative decision-making.


Positioning classrooms according to masterplan, terrain, sun and climatic conditions the unit enables various courtyards, seating, entry points, rainwater collection and a viewing platform. The mirrored, repetitive plan and the use of easily available wood profiles, concrete blocks and burnt clay bricks support the collaborative construction process.


The architecture students pass through all steps of design and planning to public relations and fundraising of building material, wages and side costs.
Additional input could be established by incorporating workshops, input-lectures on history, culture, social and economic conditions, local architecture, material and climate as well as development discourse and a code of conduct to broaden approach to architecture.

In term- break students spent their holidays on the actual implementation with members of the local community and craftsmen under the guidance of buildCollective NPO. Exchange is initiated by mixed teams of South African and European members in the construction team and mutual teaching and learning.






Main goal of this full-scale approach in architectural education is the sensitization for responsible handling of resources, diverse actors and trades in construction, and the production of knowledge for all participants.

In sustainable process with local communities, academia and other players an alternative path of applied research and social responsibility can lead to new partnerships reducing the lack of adequate housing or communal facilities.

Opening movie filmed and cut on site for hand-over ceremony by Hadrien Clair.


Fritz Alina Vanessa, Gerner Michaela, Haller Verena, Kral Lukas, Lüftenegger Viktoria, Moser Christian, Napetschnig Alexander Markus, Peieira-Arnstein Daniel, Saje Eva, Steger Daniel Carsten, Wawrzeczko Jakob Jan, Perterer Raphaela, Laura Ciriano, Tobias Küke, Müller Jonas, Teodora Gagovic, Sandra Moser, Gonzalo de Luca, Elias Molitschnig, Daniel Guerra, Anna Weisbrod, Günther Egger, Mavis Dlamini, Nontyatyambo Mditshane, Siyabonga Khuzwayo, Melan Juta, Lonwabo Dlamini, Siyabonga Mxunjini, Pakhamani Ngeleka, Ayesha Dlamini, Thobeko Dlamini, Xolani Mnyamana, Lichael Mbokodi , Bheki Mjomi, Phelisile Dlamini, Andile Mthumbu, Thanduxolo Mnyamani.

Special Thanks to
Jürgen Wirnsberger and Prof. Peter Nigst from CUAS
Jackie du Toit, Thembakazi Makedama  and their team from Ithuba Wild Coast School.
s2arch, Rotary Spittal, Fundermax, build it Port Edward and all financial supporters and suppliers!

For the student´s Facebook page on the project please visit:






photos: Marlene Wagner, Nina Savic
sketch: Jürgen Wirnsberger
videos: Hadrien Clair, Lukas Kral