Mkhukhu Mansions: The incredible architecture in informal settlements

Mkhukhu Mansions: The incredible architecture in informal settlements

- Owners of shacks in informal settlements have created their own mansions

- The homes are built from recycled scrap metals and wood, often stacked several storeys high

- The resulting "mansions" are eye-catching and often beautiful works of art

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Mzansi is full of dreamers, and never is that more apparent than in the homes of the informal settlements which reach for the sky.

Many residents dream of owning their own homes, particularly double storey homes.

Unfortunately for most of them, their dreams are blocked by obstacles like unemployment or lack of opportunities.

For others, the challenge to have their dream homes became one of architecture, and building their own mansions from the recycled scrap metals and materials that they salvaged.

Thomas Dlamini (48) from Zonkezizwe in Katlehong, Ekurhuleni said his double storey shack was inspired by a dream to own a mansion.

Following his retrenchment, Thomas took advantage of trash material and started building his dream home.

Mkhukhu Mansions: The incredible architecture in informal settlements

Thomas Dlamini's mansion in Zonkezizwe Photo: Daily Sun

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Briefly.co.za learned Thomas said he used the same plan of an RDP house and his shack has six rooms.

"I started building in 2010 and even today I am not yet finished," the qualified boiler maker and welder said.

Thomas' double storey shack is the same one that Emtee's Roll Up video was shot from.

Johannes Phala and his wife Lilian, own a four storey shack in Makausi informal settlement. The home is a mismatched assortment of materials that is cobbled together in a seemingly random fashion.

Mkhukhu Mansions: The incredible architecture in informal settlements

The mkhukhu mansions vary greatly in style and design. Photos: Daily Sun

It leans at an alarming angle, but friends of the couple seem to have no problem with climbing to the highest viewpoint to enjoy drinks in an open room that proudly proclaims, "welcome to Sun City."

Other mkhukhus appear safer, rising straight and tall from the ground, often split into several "flats" which are rented out to residents.

The conditions are not ideal, but the resourcefulness, hope, and pride of the dreamers who live in these mkhukhu mansions is magnificent to behold.

Mkhukhu Mansions: The incredible architecture in informal settlements

Photo: Daily Sun

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Source: Briefly.co.za

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