Better Living Challenge


The Better Living Challenge Announces its Finalists

Jul 30, 2014

The eagerly anticipated shortlist of finalists and exhibitors who have been selected to form the Better Living Challenge Showcase in October 2014 has at last been announced to the public. The Better Living Challenge Selection Panel has made its choice, and it’s now time to share these green solutions aimed at addressing some of the problems in low cost living. The panel has identified 23 finalists and 33 exhibitors – out of an impressive number of 130 total entries received – whose solutions embody the aims of the competition.


The Better Living Challenge ( has been on the hunt to uncover solutions and ideas to improve the lives and homes of people living in low-income areas. Groundbreaking products and innovations that are affordable, well designed and green, are being brought to life through the competition. Over 130 innovative ideas were entered into the Challenge, in three separate categories, in the hope of landing one of three grand prizes that each consist of half a million rand’s worth of support services to enable these solutions getting to market. Three student entries will each receive a R40 000 cash prize.


After a rigorous selection process involving heated debate and extensive discussion, the Better Living Challenge Selection Panel of 47 industry experts nominated three finalists in the Connected Home category, eight in the Comfortable Home category and 12 finalists in the Structural Home category. In addition, the Selection Panel identified a further 33 projects of merit that will exhibit as part of the Showcase, but are not in line to win an award. To ensure fairness, the selection process was independently observed by KPMG.


The 23 finalists per category are:

Connected Home

  1. Formula D interactive – Mobile inspection tool to help service delivery in informal settlements.
  2. Dana Cannam – Qmod
  3. Mansoor Mohamed – ShareMyNet


Comfortable Home

  1. Imari Crous – Counting Chair
  2. Justin van Blerk – The Karnik filter – A plant xylem based water filter
  3. Alejandra Olivera – BioPanel: Seaweed Construction Material
  4. Peter Krige – EKASI WATER CAP
  5. Emily Vining – The Khusela early warning fire detector and alert system
  6. Luciano Wegmershaus – UD@Home
  7. Dirk Coetser – Transition POD
  8. James van der Walt – SolarTurtle


Structural Home

  1. Vernon Collis – Housing Delivered Through New Process.
  2. Vernon Collis – California Pine (Pinus Radiata)
  3. Chris Whyte – Compressed Earth Block (CEB) Construction
  4. Clinton  Johns – IKYA Homes
  5. Bill Kirk – Temporary Informal Dwelling
  6. Kim Le Roux – informexchange
  7. Michelle Collis – Ikayacap
  8. Rotenda Nevhutalu – briGado
  9. Lawden Holmes – Embracing Informality
  10. Barry Lewis – UBU process
  11. Richard Lomax – Lighting the inside and outside of homes in informal settlements.
  12. Peter Shrimpton – Ekhaya


These finalists will now vie for a much-coveted award, with a public voting component forming an essential part of the upcoming Showcase. During October, a stimulating, curated exhibition of these shortlisted designs and innovations will be on display at venues that include Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront. This exhibition will be linked to other exciting Better Living Challenge Showcase events, with the full programme to be found on from early October.


In addition to the finalists mentioned above, the following Better Living Challenge entries will also be exhibited at the Showcase:

Structural Home category

  1. Roberto Pane – Silicawood House
  2. Frederik Groos – Butterfly House
  3. Giepie Smit – Lifewise Eco-Loo
  4. Charles Job – Tannin boned composite Panels from recycled agricultural waste
  5. Michelle Van Zyl – Re_Breath
  6. Tyron Bos – Bottleworx Building System
  7. Tudor Tenea – Plug-in Housing
  8. Leslay Greenslade – Nublocks
  9. Dawid De Vaal – Man Can Obuild
  10. Dieter Voges – uXande Housing Solutions
  11. Willem van Zyl – BrickFrame Building System
  12. Vusumzi Mahlatshana  –  The Prickly Pear Brick
  13. Nadia Ludi-Hoffman  – Building with Timber


Comfortable Home category

  1. Y Tsai – Add-It Shelving.
  2. Aram Lello – TEX
  3. Wikus van Niekerk – Super Safe Candle Holder
  4. Samantha Webber – The All-In-One Bedroom
  5. Michael Suttner – The Lightie™
  6. Deon Du Preez – Solazela
  7. Marthinus van Schalkwyk – Separo Fat Separator
  8. Dustin   Brinkley – Light 4 Life
  9. Willem Velthoven – Living Roof
  10. Gavin Redman – Compact Pipe Digester
  11. Mark Blumenthal – Solar Bottle
  12. Keith Wyness – Cooker Cooler
  13. Dave Pons – Ceiling in a can
  14. Nicky van den Aardweg – My Tova
  15. Vijay Mitha – Safe Township Lighting


Connected Home category

  1. Sarah Thomas    – Probio Bokashi Composter Kit
  2. Manuela Wall – GROWbag – Upcycled Billboard Gardening
  3. Carin Dean-Wales – Jenga Powastove and Eco-charkettes
  4. Francois De Flamingh – The Lovely Loo
  5. Alexander Frehse – H2go


The Better Living Challenge is project-managed by the Cape Craft + Design Institute (CCDI), on behalf of the Western Cape Government’s 110% Green initiative, which encourages organisations to commit to the Green Economy. The Better Living Challenge is a collaborative project between the public and private sector, and civil society demonstrating that these partnerships work to promote economic development. It is an official project (WDC#204) of the Cape Town World Design Capital 2014 (WDC2014) programme.


For more information: | Facebook – The Better Living Challenge | Twitter – @TheBLChallenge

Issued On behalf of: Cape Craft + Design Institute (


Better Living Challenge project manager Fran Cox | | 021 461 1488

110% Green Jenny Cargill, Special Advisor Office of the Premier, Western Cape

021 483 3380 |

WDC2014 Priscilla Urquhart PR and Media Manager | | 082 852 2428