Pretoria as 'urbs quadrata'

23 Jun 2006

"Placemaking in Pretoria is considered under universal, cultural and contextual aspects. The cross of Church and Paul Kruger Streets with the Central Church surrounded by the 'mandala' are universal aspects which are repeated on Church Square. The enclosure inside the rivers and mountain ranges, filled in by the gridiron street lay-out, was also the cultural preference at Graaff-Reinet, generally accepted to be the city model for Pretoria. Contextually the city form is a result of the interpretation of a classical landscape, its mountains, valleys, fountains, rivers and 'poorte'. However, recent official plans ride roughshod over these established placemaking aspects. The daydreams of a few city planners may turn out to be the nightmare of a whole city."