At the start of 2017 construction of a new Information and Communications Technology (ICT) school building began at Botha Halte Primary, off the R43 near Botha Wine Cellar in Worcester, South Africa.
Initiated and privately funded by Farmprops (Pty) Ltd, representing the Bosjes Family trust, the school forms part of the LitNum Hub for the Breede Valley area, providing quality tuition to primary school learners up to grade seven.
Great pains were taken to make the school as environmentally friendly as possible, which included specifying sustainable materials and products, such solar panels, water storage and wind turbines, wherever possible.
When retaining walls and steps were specified for the outdoor recess area, Tiaan Meyer, Architect and Director of Meyer & Associates Architects and Urban Designers, suggested using the Terraforce 4×4 Step block for cost effective and robust seating and the Terraforce L11 block for plantable and permeable earth retaining walls on the school grounds.
The Terraforce 4×4 Step blocks were designed specifically to provide efficient and economical steps in conjunction with the L range Terraforce retaining blocks and have, over the last two decades become popular for practical stair and seating arrangements at leisure amenities and school sports facilities.
Says Meyer: “the blocks offer a good looking and neat finish, and Decorton Retaining Systems – sub-contracted by JJ Dempers Group – specialising in Terraforce retaining walls, did a great job installing the blocks. The seating also fits in seamlessly with the rest of the architecture, that showcases modern, clean finishes, fresh colours and sustainable technology.”
Meyer also adds that the project is one that has the potential to affect real change for future generations in the Breede Valley: “This is a love project, to give back and uplift to the local community, while implementing the same technology and applications in a rural environment as are normally seen in an urban environment.”
After completion of the project in September 2019, landscaping was undertaken by Square One Landscape Architects together with Afri Landscapes. All future learning activities taking place at Botha Halte will be provided by Bosjes Trust, in partnership with the Western Cape Education Department (WCED).