Johannesburg Then & Now – 1954 vs 2014

Following on from our Cape Town Then and Now video, we thought it would be a good idea to create one for Johannesburg.

Watch our video here:

Commissioner Street with Colosseum and His Majesty’s Building

Commissioner Street

The building called Colosseum was given a glass and concrete overhaul and a few stories added to it. Further in the distance stands His Majesty’s Building, which at the time of completion was the tallest building in Africa.

Kerk & Sauer Street with Jeppe Street Power Station (Turbine Hall)

Kerk & Sauer Street

The Jeppe Street Power station operated until the 1970s. Since then the cooling tower has been demolished and the turbine hall has been converted into a function venue.

Kerk Street looking west from High Court

Kerk Street

President & Ntemi Piliso Street, Newtown

President & Ntemi Piliso Street, Newtown

This small triangular city block houses over 50 tiny blanket shops. Blankets are traditional Zulu wedding gifts given by the bride to her new family.

Commissioner & Simmonds Street with Victory Building in the Background

Commissioner & Simmonds Street

Department of Economic Development – Simmonds Street

Simmonds Street

Chamber of Mines – Hollard Street, Marshalltown

Chamber of Mines

One of the oldest parts of Johannesburg, which was founded on mining.

City Hall Complex – Albertina Sisulu Street, formerly Market Street

City Hall Complex

The Rea Vaya bus lane was introduced just in time for the 2010 World Cup. The Albertina Sisulu route runs from Krugersdorp on the west of the mining belt right through to eMalahleni on the east.

Simmonds & President Street

Simmonds & President Street

Jay Walking is still the norm in modern day Johannesburg. The ANC headquarters, Lithuli House, is just around the corner from here.

President Street

President Street

Diagonal Street

Diagonal Street

Diagonal Street is much unchanged, it houses the famous herbalist shop and the Museum of Man and Science.

Simmonds & Main Street

Simmonds & Main Street

Ganters is no more, but on the corner opposite is The Corner Coffee Shop, a new landmark and part of the Main Street Urban renewal precinct.

FNB Building From Library Gardens – Simmonds & Albertina Sisulu Street

FNB Building From Library Gardens

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Our Readers Comments

  1. Seems the road workers could not paint straight, those days as well as recent, amazing.

  2. Interesting shots. Bear in mind that the Colosseum was not given a glass overhaul and additional stories. It was torn down in 1984. In 1965 Eskom House and Ansteys were the two tallest buildings in Johannesburg. I don’t know where His Majesties fits into the equation.

  3. I love history! Especially of Jozi city! What amazes me is how well-dressed people were. You would not be seen unless properly attired when hitting the high street. Days gone by

  4. So Nostalgic!! The entire world was so different!! Less freedom for everybody, more duties, but what a city!! At the same level than other very civilized in the west!!
    Very, very nostalgic!!!

  5. Really great pics. Really nice to see.

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