|Tanmoy Dey- Team Leader (KU Leuven), Louise Bani Sarcar (BUET), Syed Md. Golam Rabbani (SUST)
|Samuel Herpin of Baton Rouge, Louisiana-based RHH Architects, USA
The core of the proposed design schemes stems out of some major realizations like: rapidly increasing demand for affordable housing as current urbanization rate is 3.15 percent, sustainable housing solutions with cost efficiency and energy efficiency; appealing aesthetically with cultural relationship. The design proposal aims at creating spaces rather than designing keeping in mind the different demands of the individual families.
The design proposal has been developed aiming the mountainous landlocked country Lesotho which had annual population growth rate of 0.68 for the last decade from 2006-2016. Basic program for designing the housing includes unit that includes two bedrooms, living cum dining space along with service functions like kitchen and toilet. But the main challenge was to accommodate all the programs within extreme budgetary design proposal for the people of Lesotho with very low annual income.
Within the extreme budgetary challenge, the design proposal has come out with innovative community involving plans along with sustainable design solution.Several convertible options kept possibilities for users in order to explore various planning for present and future as well according to the individual family needs. Families from housing units can increase their habitable spaces with several options like units of two floors with two rooms or even four rooms. Families who can’t afford to extend vertically but have need for more than two bed rooms can use up the backyard space for extension. Not only the incremental options, according to the need they can build micro unit house option with only one bed room and living cum dining room along with kitchen and toilet.
250mm brick walls are used as load bearing walls with mud plaster colored in indoor spaces and brick foundation as sub-structure. As roof framing saw pine time rafters have been used, corrugated aluminum sheets as roof sheeting, scrap or recycled wood for doors and windows; and reinforced concrete with sand and crushed stone have been used. Beneath roof optional ceiling of plywood can be used as heat insulting material as it is very affordable and available material at site. The idea of sharing kitchen and toilet between the owner and the tenant ensuring proper privacy for the house owner at the ground floor helped to minimize the footprint of the structure as well as construction cost. All these inventiveness helped to achieve the challenge to minimize the construction cost of each housing unit tentatively within LSL50,000 ($3,750 USD).
The design proposal aims at achieving healthy community interaction by arranging a yard space at the back of each house unit. Moreover, these back yards are oriented face to face with green/open space that can create playful community interaction among the families living there. Women can develop their handicraft practices at these yards as the folding doors while folded can create a common space combining the backyard and the room with the folding doors. These provisions and interventions will help the housing to achieve goal as stated before preference for created spaces rather than designed spaces. The vehicular pressure is kept on the other side of the housing units.
The six shortlisted designs for the first stage were: Tanmoy Dey (Bangladesh); Sixin Lian (Italy);Amanda Saputri (Indonesia);Gogo Zhu (USA); David Kwantwi Mensah (Ghana) and Tumelo Lerata (Lesotho).
According to the jurors, “The ingenuity of Tanmoy Dey’s team’s winning scheme is encapsulated in the simplicity of the plan and the ability of the house to incrementally expand vertically. The building can evolve into a more urban and denser environment with a good public street presence and an interior with enhanced privacy.”
The jury included: Mariam Kamara (Atelier Masōmī and United4design, Niger, and Associate Professor at Brown University); MphethiMorojele(MMA Design Studio, Johannesburg); Sam ÓghaleOboh(FAIA, FRAIC, AECOM Canada Architects, Edmonton); Peter Rich (FAIA, IntFRIBA, PRich Style & Design, Johannesburg); and Nadia Tromp (Ntsika Architects, Johannesburg).
A community design workshop will follow including the winning designer, promising design winner (local), along with low-income families and the local construction sector where the winning design will be modified and built by the Lesotho Housing and Land Development Corporation. The prototype will be used to gauge the market response as to whether it is a viable solution to the current shortage of affordable housing in Lesotho.
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