Night Rider, Cape Town, Oct 2009

Concept: a communication portal between the city and its inhabitants.

Equipment: 200 x 1m x 1m LED panels mounted to scaffolding

Project Team: Michael Elion, Ryan Christian (COZA productions)

Approval: Mayor of Cape Town, Dan Plato

After months of negotiations the project was refused by (one person in) the City of Cape Town for entirely spurious reasons. The project was going to be a temporary installation. It was also approved by every other department in the City as well as the Mayor of Cape Town who enthusiastically endorsed it, even linking it to one of his campaigns.

In money terms it would have cost the City nothing. Structural engineers had signed off the drawings, rigging certificates and insurance were in place, and an installation team ready to go etc. All the City would need to do is give the go-ahead for the use of the roof space, and in effect they did except one person in one department didn’t want it.

Many departments (there were 15 or more involved) who approved the project in principle are not listed here from Fire, to Events, to Arts & Culture, Disaster Management etc. People working in the building were looking forward to doing it and were excited about sense of upliftment it would bring. But as the city has to give a unified voice and didn’t want to fight with each other unnecessarily the project was refused.

Spring Art Tour, Cape Town Oct 2009

Approval: Roads and Traffic

Approval: City Health

Approval: Specialised Technical Services

Approval: Custodian of Building; Approval Outdoor Advertising

Approval: Building Development Services

Approval: Radio Communications 1

Approval: Radio Communications 2

Approval: Mayor’s Office

Refusal Harbour Master

Refusal: Environment and Heritage [1], due to Harbour Master’s refusal

Refusal: Environment and Heritage [2], due to Harbour Master’s refusal

APPROVAL Harbour Master

Refusal: Environment and Heritage - light pollution

Michael Elion reply