• Maximize the site for industrial use
  • Factory sizes mid to large size
  • Minimum 7m height and access for articulated trucks
  • Office and staff ablutions to be included in the factory sections
  • Provide flexibility in joining or sub division of factories
  • Where possible factories to have a yard
  • Design to provide a good long term investment in terms of low maintenance and flexibility in terms of favourable letting through time
  • Eventual total size 35 000 msq

Was atop a hill with a local spine road around it.

The land was originally part of the Marianhill Monastery property.

They sold off parts of their land on the edges of their significant property.

The Monastery was established in 1885 by trappist monks wanting to establish a self sufficient, serving community.

Courtyard type of architecture in the Romanesque revival style

Use of a local material the red brick, green roof, exposed trusses, curved arches, grey rendered parapet tops are all repeated in the new factory building in some way to reference the building back to the Monastery.

The Marianhill Monastery continues as a monastery to this day.


It was important for me as the architect to reference the project back to the area, to the original owners, to the endeavours of the original monks in providing a complete settlement/community.

I always believe one respects the past and incorporates it in the new in a way that does the past proud and ensures that the history is not forgotten. A man without a history is a man without a memory.



  • Project Architect – Kevin Lloyd (Director Theunissen Jankowitz )
  • Engineers – Keeve Steyn
  • Contractor – Group 5
  • Client – KwaZulu Finance Company
  • Project value –28 000 million
  • Construction – 12 months
  • When –1998

20 years on the roof sheeting has been replaced but the factories continue to be let and used successfully and the building still remains in a reasonable condition.


To maximize the factory space it was decided to make the factories two stories so actually using the slope and accessing from two sides but on two different levels.

Using the contours and distance created by a perimeter circular approach allowed the road to be ramped and large articulated trucks to turn into the factories.

Factories are 22 metres deep

The floors are post tensioned concrete and the roofs brownbuilt sheeting on castellated trusses.

Shaded clerestory roof lights as a major architectural feature help to provide light deep into the factories.

Windows in the factories were concrete winbloks with green framed aluminium opening sections.

Each factory on top and on the ends has a yard space.

Landscaping is provided in the ends of blocks and in centre island.

Signage draws its inspiration from the profile of the gatehouse to Monastery.

Each block was colour coded in the signage.

The blocks are simple in form (long rectangular or t shaped) and arranged to along contours and to create easy access using the length of road thus provided and to form a courtyard reminiscent of the monastery.

Car parking is outside each factory where shade cloth parking was possible.

Suspended curved sheet metal in steel frame formed the individual factory signage.

At the entrance gate security facility was provided and a sign board for individual factories and blocks.

Wherever space was not used for road, yards or factories these sections were landscaped with indigenous shrubs and trees.

Similarly in the centre courtyard and individual yards near entrances and staff resting areas trees were planted.