URBAN HISTORY AND DEVELOPMENT OF ASMARA
By: Mandisa Magwaza
Dr Belula Tecle-Misghina’s book on her architectural experiences was launched at the Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment at Durban University of Technology Monday.
The book tells the stories of urban development in Asmara, through a historical and logical discourse, within an analytical framework comprising population, geography, and the history of the place.
During the presentation, Misghina showed the evolution of how things have changed and configured since the city was damaged during earthquakes.
The event succeeded in painting a vivid picture of how she was able to assist in rebuilding the urban environment.
Her aim was to trace the history of urban evolution in the city of Asmara in order to identify its morphology, which had been generated by both planned and unplanned urban spatial development.
Records were sought from the historical societies of four villages that were developed into urban settlements.
Book reviewer Dr Debbie Whelan said that the book was well researched and it added to her knowledge on the subject.
“The most interesting part was the idea of communal land. The document was well structured and very systematic,” she said.
Third year Architecture student Lulama Mhlongo said the launch gave her a detailed insight of what is expected of her in her career.
“This was a very informative launch, her active interest in architecture and urbanism will result in further publications in the near future,” said Mhlongo.
Tecle-Misghina concluded, “I decided to publish my book in South Africa at DUT, because I wanted to share my information with other countries to dispense knowledge to future architects,” she said.