From a selection of 56 hopefuls, Cape Town now stands alongside just two other world cities, Dublin and Bilbao, in the race to earn the World Design Capital title.
The announcement is pivotal for Cape Town’s reputation as a destination that has adopted design for transformation and social cohesion. Design as a principle for changing lives began with the end of apartheid and, increasingly, has become a guiding philosophy in the repositioning of Cape Town as a sustainable city; committed to a journey to improve the quality of life of all its citizens.
‘This is a significant moment for Cape Town,’ says Cape Town Tourism CEO, Mariette du Toit-Helmbold. ‘Design is increasingly becoming a fundamental tool to ensure that Cape Town is more competitive, liveable and efficient. Cape Town’s position as innovation hub sets us apart from any other African city.’
With predecessors such as Seoul, Korea (2010) and Helsinki, Finland (2012), proving that living design can in fact transform lives, Cape Town’s status as a top three contender shifts the city onto a new world platform and into a new era.
‘We are building an inclusive city, one based around five pillars: the opportunity city, the safe city, the caring city, the inclusive city and the efficient city,’ said Cape Town Mayor, Patricia de Lille. ‘Design is a tool for all of these areas of transformation. It is able to inform us as to how we can best provide employment and upliftment to improve the quality of life of our citizens.’
The World Design Capital 2014 winner will be announced on 26 October 2011. Extracts from the Cape Town World Design Capital 2014 Bid Book are available on www.capetown2014.co.za. Follow the bid on Facebook and Twitter @CreativeCT or @CapeTownTourism.