top of page


cape town, western cape, in progress

Herringbone is a mixed-use building in the Salt River Triangle between Woodstock and Observatory in Cape Town, designed by GASS Architecture Studios for the Divercity Urban Property Group.

The development aims to ease the housing shortage in Cape Town’s city centre and surrounds by adding nearly 400 affordable rental housing units to the area. It also seeks to energise the precinct and activate the public space around the building, defining the urban character and setting the tone for future development.

Herringbone has been designed to integrate with its environment. It is a perimeter building with an open central courtyard, carved open on the north-facing façade to maximise natural light and fresh air throughout.

The ground floor perimeter faces outward, making provision for small businesses such as retailers and restaurants to “live out” onto the sidewalk. Historically, the main streets in the area have been characterised by colonnades and corner shops, which provide shelter, establish human scale, sustain the fine grain of the urban fabric and facilitate a pedestrian-friendly experience. GASS Architecture Studios has recreated this kind of interface with the public, softened with the introduction trees and planters, which also address the lack of public space in the precinct.

The mass of the building - constituting the residential component above retail level - is set back in response to the scale of the surrounding buildings. The upper levels feature outward-facing windows and pop-out balconies and a wraparound balcony that interact directly with the street and the park opposite, contributing to their safety through passive surveillance.

The adjacent Rex Trueform building proved a significant informant for the larger-scale elements of Herringbone. While the ground floor and certain elevations of Herringbone took inspiration from the face-brick that characterises the smaller-scale industrial buildings in the area, the Rex Trueform’s flush-jointed and painted façade was referenced on the upper levels. The building mass on the street-fronting facades, however, was broken down and articulated with slim recesses and floating elements.

Herringbone makes a harmonious addition to the neighbourhood and aims to foster a sustainable, interconnected urban environment in which the community can thrive.

Project Gallery

bottom of page