Architecture & Urban Design

COJ Metro Centre

The upgrading of the Metro Centre in Johannesburg is a part of the City’s Space Optimisation Programme that was instituted by the client, the Johannesburg Property Company.


This project began with the preparation of an Urban Development Framework (UDF) for Metro Centre that aims to stitch together the urban environment, creating new pedestrian links between Hillbrow and Braamfontein, improving the quality of public open and green spaces, increasing the available bulk and available mix of uses with a high focus on transit-oriented design (TOD) and public transport.


The overall plan for the precinct envisions a mixed-use campus that includes renovations to the existing Metro Centre building, construction of the new Council Chambers, and the building of a new banqueting hall, ground floor retail opportunities, residential, office and hotel space. The precinct is centred around the City Council of Johannesburg bounded by Hoofd, Joubert and Loveday Streets; and is approached by Rissik Street from the south.


The precinct will contain several new Green Star-rated buildings and proposes the design of a connected network of public spaces to promote the campus as a TOD node. This will include improving access via new cycle lanes and amenities for non-motorised transport (NMT) users, encouraging walkability and connectivity across the precinct and approaching the construction of the precinct with sustainability as a leading concern for energy use, water conservation, waste management and urban greening.


Overall Objectives

-To stitch and improve accessibility from the hinterland effectively to and through the Metro Campus (to include Constitution Hill, Park Station, Hillbrow, and Braamfontein including Wits University Campus)

-To design a connected network of public spaces (Project for Public Spaces principles)

-To increase the bulk on the Campus

-To improve the sustainability aspects of the Campus (make the place more sustainable) employing the Community Green Building Council principles

-To promote the Campus as a TOD node in line with the principles of “The corridors of freedom”,

-To improve the walkability aspects in and around the site (in line with the COJ Complete Streets policy framework)

-To change the identity and character of the place – to embody and reflect the principles of a democratic and free Johannesburg (world-class African City)

-To identify catalytic and interventions to make Metro Campus Development Ready– integration with other public and private sector urban renewal initiatives