|Farhan Arif Rahman
|Kanu Kumar Das, Biplob Kanti Biswa; supervisor: Shajib Paul
|Chittagong University of Engineering & Technology (CUET)
Urban solid waste management is a serious environmental issue confronting the cities in developing countries like Bangladesh. Apathy towards the problem, inadequacy of field level information and data, and resource constraints may be blamed for the dismal situation of solid waste management often visible in our cities. In the city of Chittagong, 1037 tons of daily generated waste (0.352kg/cap/day) (1) is dumped in two landfill sites; both being beside major residential areas. The Ananda Bazar landfill site receives about half of Chittagong’s daily generated waste, currently reaching a peak height of 53’, well above the safe height of 13’. This continuation would certainly result in an environmental hazard.
There are certain criteria that are must for a landfill site. These sites must be separated from the habitable areas by using buffer zones, no residential development, and water bodies can be near them. But the landfill site at Ananda Bazar seems to violate all the above criteria and has grown as a result of pure negligence. As a result, the local community is facing severe health hazards along with the serious threats of contaminating the Bay of Bengal.
Currently, 12.41% of all wastes generated in Chittagong are recycled and only 1% is composted (2) but with proper infrastructure, about 70%-80% of waste can be recycled which could lead to a substantial annual earning, according to the research done by the private research body Waste concern. After the intervention, the industry could recycle up to 60% of total incoming waste, and more than 25% of waste could be turned into energy and only 15% would be landfilled.
The aim of this project was, therefore, to design an infrastructure that would explore the possibilities of turning waste into wealth as well as changing the public perception towards the topic. By following an integrated solid waste management approach, the goal was to design a resource recovery facility which would not be harmful to the locality, instead would decontaminate the surrounding and gain capital at the same time. Moreover, how the site can be healed and returned to its original condition and being usable for communal purposes is also explored in the project. These infrastructures are pertinent today as they prove long term solution to dealing with the city’s waste and can dictate how these projects can also be used as public spaces that raise awareness on such issues and not just as public utility buildings.
In this project, the design goal was to introduce an infrastructure that could solve the aforementioned problems of the site and also later be transformed and adapt in accordance with the community needs. Thus, the design process was subdivided into various phases.
In the early phase, there was a need to design an infrastructure to treat on-site garbage and prevent further harm to the locality. In this stage no further waste is piled up in the site, the current waste is treated, and an alternative site is suggested for dumping which fulfills the proper criteria for a landfill. Next, the site is healed through phytoremediation where the goal is to help nature reclaim what was once hers by planting suitable vegetation. Finally, the end goal is to make the site usable for communal use. Guidelines are given for future use of the existing infrastructure according to the local development proposals. A sense of reminiscence is created to convey the message to the general. The message is about change; the message is about adaptability.
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1. Hasan, M.R. and Islam, M.R., Technical Performance Analysis In Solid Waste Management: Experience Of Chittagong City Corporation.
2. Aqua Consultant et al (2012). Study on Municipal Solid Waste Management. Professional Report. Bangladesh Municipal Development Fund, pp.1-145
CONETXT contributor: Sanjida Hasan, architecture graduate, CUET