Why Cape Town being named World Design Capital 2014 is a big deal

Thursday, 27 October 2011

At approximately 06:20 yesterday morning, Cape Town was announced World Design Capital 2014 at the ICSID Conference in Taipei. I have blogged about the importance of this development before. It is important to me as a designer, because it means my field is finally getting the recognition and respect, it so deserves. Cape Town had some pretty stiff competition from Bilboa and Dublin, but in the end, I believe the best city won. 

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I think the average Joe, is probably sitting there, scratching their head and going big whoop. So, I thought I'd do a quick recap of how this benefits Cape Town and my country in the broader scheme of things. 

Why Cape Town being named World Design Capital 2014 is a big deal:

1.) An economic boost to both the city of Cape Town and South Africa
Local government will invest more in infrastructure and 'green areas' such as the city bowl, cycle tracks,  culture hubs and safe areas. Also an increase in tourism will have a great benefit. Tourists are great assets. SA realized this during the Soccer World Cup. Foreigners come on over, bring your Euros, Pounds and Dollars! Torino (Italy) reported higher visitor numbers in their title year.

2.) Recognition and attention from the creative community of the world
This is pretty cool. More movies, music, advertising and conferences. Who wouldn't want to do their next big project in the beautiful mother city?

3.) Marketing
And free at that. The South African design community will increase more in global media. It allows journos to delve deeper. Explore our great design scene and history, other than that mountain and Robben Island. 

4.) More drive for design solutions
In a country that was previously divided (apartheid), to a more incorporative and inclusionary environment. A place to bring people together. What better than design to unite people. The award also raises awareness of the power of design. Design is a problem solving field, albeit creative, but driven to make life easier. Everything will benefit from this, traffic, townships, the general environment. Creative thinking profits everyone! 

5.) Heritage
2014 will also mark 20 years after the dawn of South Africa's new democracy. It is a poignant year in history. A celebration of South African design history and development. I have been the biggest fan of this bid and so happy Cape Town won! Ke Nako (It's time)! 

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