Cities: People before Project

By J de Wit and T Markewicz, Royal HaskoningDHV


Published in:

Electricity+Control, December 2014 (pages 32 – 33)


Enquiries: Hillary Erasmus.

Tel. 011 798 6000 or email


Read the full article on Cities: People before Project in PDF format.


The ways in which we can face the cities’ challenges and help achieve this urban resiliency are varied and multi-dimensional. There is no one-size-fits-all solution to these city challenges.

An integrated approach is to focus on communities and their particular circumstances; after all, cities are as much about people as they are about how infrastructure can be employed to meet their unique needs - scratch the surface of a city and you will find people in various stages of life with different needs.

Facing city challenges from a people-focused position (stakeholder engagement), the company which the authors represent believes that it is well placed to understand and provide solutions for the potential shocks that can impact cities and often produce social breakdown, physical destruction or economic difficulty.
Royal HaskoningDHV is the lead consultant of the Existing Building Performance Rating Tool for the GBCSA which is currently in its pilot phase. They believe that urbanisation in Africa can steer development into two distinct but completely diametrically opposite scenarios; into a negative spiral, compounding problems on top of each other or it can be the driving force for the development of efficient and smart living ‘ecosystems’ that will flourish.


Take note

  • There is not a ‘one size fits all’ solution to our city challenges.
  • Cities are as much about people as they are about infrastructure.
  • Understanding real issues facing a society in the context of its particular location makes infrastructure and planning solutions relevant and effective.