The Matrix Urban Designers and Architects
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Reconstruction of the historical building Lewis Stores

Lewis Stores in Grahamstown commands an imposing position at the end of High Street and the intersection of Bathurst Street. Housed in the late Victorian “Bon Marche” building, tragedy struck when - in February 2005 - it burnt down to the ground, leaving part of one bay partially intact. This bay became the clue to the redesign of the whole building when Lewis Stores contracted The Matrix to reconstruct it. Accurate measurements of moldings could be taken of this fragment. This National Monument was reconstructed with the help of modern technology. A red brick external skin was erected, stiffened with concealed concrete columns, with exact copies of the original moldings attached, now sculpted of fiberglass. The inside of the building was modernized and the basement extended.

Project Facts

Value:R7 million
Client:Lewis Stores
Awards:Eastern Cape Institute of Architects - Regional Award 2008
Date of Project:2006
Design Team:Albrecht Herholdt, Neal Fisher