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Dr. Chris Mulder

Founder, Crossways Development

BIOGRAPHY: DR CHRIS MULDER
Dr Chris Mulder and his wife, Pat founded their Multi-Disciplinary Planning and Design Practice,
CMAI, in 1980 when they and their four children returned home after a three year post Graduate
Studies (PhD) at Texas A & M University Faculty Architecture and Urban Design and Terrain
Analysis at Harvard University.
In a career spanning more than four decades, he and his team from CMAI, have won numerous
local and international Planning and Design and Property Development awards.
CMAI had offices in Pretoria, Cape Town, Mossel Bay and Durban. Most noticeable projects
where CMAI was involved includes the S.A Reserve Bank Building in Pretoria (one of three firms),
revamp/master planning of the Union Buildings Gardens, Master Plan Kirstenbosch Botanical
Gardens, Fancourt Golf Estate in George, Ecological Planning of Kruger National Park, Mossel
Bay Harbour, Umgeni River Valley, Kings Park site planning in Durban
Various projects in Namibia, Angola, Kenia, Greece, Seychelles, Madagascar, and Pezula Golf
Estate Knysna, Belvidere Estate Knysna and their flagship Award winning Development Thesen
Island project in Knysna.
Chris and Pat did a three year stint at the CMAI office working on various projects in Mainland
China in1995,96 and 97, at that time the first private SA Company to establish and office in
Mainland China.
Dr Mulder completed his Bachelors in Agriculture and then, 10 years later a Masters in
Landscape Architecture at the University of Pretoria.

  • Chris and Pat got married in 1964 and the couple started farming on rented land as
    “Sharecroppers” giving 25% of everything they produced to the Landlord as rent while
    Pat gave ballet classes to the farming children in the region to earn extra money.
  • The couple acquired three farms in 10 years and was then expropriated by the previous
    Government and their land included in the then, to be, Lebowa Homeland.
  • They then decided to go to the USA with their four children for Post Graduate studies in
    1977.
  • He is the first South African to obtain a doctorate in Environmental Planning . He graduated
    in Urban Design from Texas A&M University’s College of Architecture.(1980)
  • He completed his postgraduate studies in the fields of terrain-analysis and metropolitan
    land-use planning at the Harvard Graduate School of Design University of Massachusetts.
  • In 2002 Mulder was made A Distinguished Alumnus of Texas A&M University’s College of
    Architecture.
  • In 2009, he was honoured by the Institute for Landscape Architects in Southern Africa
    (ILASA) as one of the country’s Icons of Landscape Architecture in South Africa.
  • In 2011 Texas A & M University made him a Distinguished International Alumnus
  • CMAI designed and developed Thesen Island in Knysna…. A multi award winning Marina
    Development in South Africa most sensitive tidal lagoon. (www.Thesenisland.co.za)
  • In 2018 his Crossways Farm Village Development was presented an Outstanding Award
    for Analysis and Master Planning at the International Federation of Landscape Architects
    (IFLA) AAPME AWARDS Resilience By Design, in Singapore(www.crossways.co.za)
    In 2019 Dr Mulder was a nominee for The Sir Geoffrey Jellicoe Award, the highest honour
    worldwide that IFLA can bestow.
    The first time that someone from the African continent, had been nominated as one of the final
    three nominees. Dr Mulder was selected not just for vision and design aesthetics in
    Environmentally sensitive coastal areas but also continuous involvement in job creation, training,
    and skills development as well as poverty alleviation and his passion, Rural Development – all
    on display at Crossways Farm Village, South Africa’s First Rural New Town and smart Village where
    they are currently living in a new house built there.

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