Public Architecture Architect in a foreign culture Architecture for Humanity BaseHabitat UKUMBI NGO Using architecture to mitigate poverty Ukumbi ry is a Finnish non-governmental organisation established in 2007 by three Finnish architects. Saija Hollmén, Jenni Reuter and Helena Sandman have all extensive experience of development cooperation projects in several African countries. In the course of their work they realised that culturally knowledgeable and skilfully designed architecture is a tool that can be used to improve the living conditions of communities and to mitigate poverty. The mission of Ukumbi is to offer architectural planning and design for underprivileged groups. In addition to cultural sustainability, Ukumbi also seeks to create ecologically sustainable architecture. * ) Ukumbi is a Swahili word that denotes a public meeting place or forum.
Green Home Building: Index Housing Revolution: Better, safer, smarter, more sustainable dwellings green architecture notes » Favela-Bairro project: Jorge Mario Jauregui Rio de Janiero Sustainable cities require sustainable communities as well as care for the environment. Brazilian architect, Jorge Mario Jauregui has been working in Rio de Janiero for the last fifteen years to use his skills as an architect to bring infrastructure and community facilities to the informal communities throughout the city known as favelas. Favelas, which house about 20% of the city’s population, have been growing in pockets of unclaimed land throughout the city for the past 100 years. However, since unplanned and originally unsanctioned by the government, these communities lack infrastructure and public social spaces. Jorge has coined the phrase “favela-barrio” to describe his approach to urban design in the favelas. Literally translated as ‘slum-neighborhood’, it expresses the idea that these informal developments, or shanty towns, are here to stay and are thriving communities; and with some infrastructure and public space can be transformed into neighborhoods.
Shipping Container House / Studio H:T Architects: Studio H:T Location: Nederland, Colorado, USA Project Completion: May 2010 Building Area: 1,517 sqft Photographs: Braden Gunem This project questions the need for excessive space and challenges occupants to be efficient. Two shipping containers saddlebag a taller common space that connects local rock outcroppings to the expansive mountain ridge views. The containers house sleeping and work functions while the center space provides entry, dining, living and a loft above. The loft deck invites easy camping as the platform bed rolls between interior and exterior. The project is planned to be off-the-grid using solar orientation, passive cooling, green roofs, pellet stove heating and photovoltaics to create electricity.
Kounkuey Design Initiative MEKA reinvents shipping container housing Shipping containers are wonderful things- for shipping. They are part of an elaborate and extensive infrastructure for moving goods cheaply and efficiently that has revolutionized world trade. They are also all the rage among designers and architects who have been converting them into housing, with varying degrees of success. Then there is Meka. They do not build shipping container housing; they build what I will call housing containers- modules of houses that are built to shipping container dimensions to take advantage of the shipping container infrastructure, without most of the problems that actually arise from working with shipping containers. Where a shipping container is designed with enough steel to stack nine high completely filled with stuff, Meka designs their boxes with just enough steel to do the structural job that is required, while filling in the rest with conventional building materials that cost a lot less, that are easier to work with, and provide some insulation.