Winner 2015

Award for
Education or Healthcare Structures

Project Description

“Australopithecus sediba” – arguably the most important hominid fossil - was discovered at "Malapa", a sensitive game reserve and UNESCO Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site. This small, steel, insect-like structure is designed to be a lightweight, 85% recyclable platform for visitors to the location, and for a one ton manual crane used by scientists to inspect the site. To preserve the site no foundations were permitted, and suitable rock footings for the platform ‘legs’ could only be approved by scientists during construction – ensuring that it does not damage the sensitive area even after it is removed.

Judge’s comments

The judges felt the innovative design was an impressive reflection of what can be achieved when engineers work in harmony with nature to develop a solution which both celebrates and preserves the fragility of the environment.

Project overview

Structural Designer

  • Fellows Consulting

Client Name

  • University of the Witwatersrand


  • Johannesburg, South Africa


  • Krynauw Nel Associates

Year Submitted

  • 2015

Submitted By

  • Fellows Consulting