Cape Town won the honours last week against other shortlisted cities, Dublin and Bilbao. The announcement made in Taipei was streamed live over the internet along with the acceptance speech made by Executive Mayor Patricia de Lille.
When the announcement was made all of Cape Town was celebrating at various venues around the city, including a pre-announcement party hosted at The Assembly, one of Cape Town’s premier live music venues.
Acting Executive Mayor Ian Nelson announced the news at a Council meeting saying that the news was not only a great achievement for the city but also for the design community as a whole as it was their hard work which earned them the title.
He added that it was fitting that South Africa would be celebrating 20 years of democracy in 2014 because Cape Town has shown how through design a once divided city has morphed into a more integrated city.
“Design holds the key to addressing the issues of growing urbanisation. Design will help us make a great city even greater,” he had said.
As the World Design Capital for 2014, the City of Cape Town will now be required to pay a licensing fee of 160 000 Euros to Icsid (the International Council for Societies of Industrial Design) over two years, for the use of the title. Private sector sponsorship will be sought to promote the title and the city's year-long programme of events.
Guy Lundy, CEO of Accelerate Cape Town and Bid Committee member said: "To be economically competitive Cape Town must promote its people assets, ideas, skills, and solutions for a more liveable city, to the world – against a backdrop of great natural beauty. We anticipate strong private sector interest in partnering with the World Design Capital 2014 project in the form of sponsorships. The title offers a full year of exposure in 2014, plus two years of pre-publicity in the run-up to the designated year. This makes it a very attractive opportunity for brands wanting to align themselves with design and creativity."
This new title will also attract designers from across the country and even the world to our shores. This could play a vital role in Cape Town’s property market.