#LoFab: MASS Design Group's Campaign For Local Building

16:00 - 27 May, 2015

"If I get a contract, so does the entire neighborhood."

Kimmelman on MASS Design Group's Open-Air Clinics in Haiti

00:00 - 29 December, 2014
Kimmelman on MASS Design Group's Open-Air Clinics in Haiti, © Iwan Baan for the New York Times (click image for more)
© Iwan Baan for the New York Times (click image for more)

“Architecture and health are inseparable,” says Haitian doctor and founder of Gheskio in Michael Kimmelman’s latest New York Times piece In Haiti, Battling Disease With Open-Air Clinics. Recounting the devastating images of medical dysfunction that have circulated the internet since the Ebola epidemic, Kimmelman presents MASS Design Group’s nearly complete Port-au-Prince health clinics as a potential model for healthcare architecture worldwide. Combating cholera and tuberculosis with a modest, practical layout and open-air design, the new clinics will serve one of the city’s largest slums. Learn why Kimmelman declares them “handsome” and believes they will help eradicate disease in Haiti, here

Architecture for Humanity Announces Completion of Haiti Initiatives

01:00 - 9 November, 2014
Architecture for Humanity Announces Completion of Haiti Initiatives, Collège Mixte Le Bon Berger. Image Courtesy of Architecture for Humanity
Collège Mixte Le Bon Berger. Image Courtesy of Architecture for Humanity

Architecture for Humanity has announced the end of their program in Haiti, effective from January 2015. The charitable organization, which has its headquarters in San Francisco, set up offices in Port-au-Prince in March 2010 in order to better help the people of Haiti after the 2010 earthquake. Through almost five years in Haiti, they have completed nearly 50 projects, including homes, medical clinics, offices, and the 13 buildings in their Haiti School Initiative. Their work has positively affected the lives of over 1 million Haitians, with their schools initiative alone providing education spaces for over 18,000 students.

Read on after the break for more on the end of Architecture for Humanity's Haiti program, and images of their completed schools

École Elie Dubois. Image Courtesy of Architecture for Humanity École La Dignité. Image Courtesy of Architecture for Humanity St. Louis de Gonzague Chemisry & Physics Building. Image Courtesy of Architecture for Humanity École Ceverine. Image Courtesy of Architecture for Humanity +22

Puzzle-Piece Homes, A Solution for Rapidly Growing Populations

00:00 - 4 November, 2013
Puzzle-Piece Homes, A Solution for Rapidly Growing Populations, Courtesy of ECOnnect
Courtesy of ECOnnect

By now, we have all heard the mantra. In twenty years time, the world's cities will have grown from three to five billion people, forty percent of these urban dwellers will be living at or below the poverty line facing the constant threat of homelessness - scary statistics and even scarier implications. 

ECOnnect, a Holland-based design firm, envisions a solution for these future housing shortages, one that could build a one-million-inhabitant city per week for the next twenty years for $10,000 per family. Peter Stoutjesdijk, architect at ECOnnect, created the concept after widespread devastation in Haiti caused by a massive earthquake left of hundreds of thousands of people homeless depending on tents for temporary relief.

Beyond the Tent: Why Refugee Camps Need Architects (Now More than Ever)

09:30 - 14 October, 2013
Beyond the Tent: Why Refugee Camps Need Architects (Now More than Ever), Courtesy of refugeecamp.ca
Courtesy of refugeecamp.ca

In 2013 alone some 1 million people have poured out of Syria to escape a civil conflict that has been raging for over two years. The total number of Syrian refugees is well over 2 million, an unprecedented number and a disturbing reality that has put the host countries under immense infrastructural strain.

Host countries at least have a protocol they can follow, however. UN Handbooks are consulted and used to inform an appropriate approach to camp planning issues. Land is negotiated for and a grid layout is set. The method, while general, is meticulous – adequate for an issue with an expiration date.

Or at least it would be if the issue were, in fact, temporary.

MASS Design Group's Proposal to Reconstruct Haitian Hospital

01:00 - 8 October, 2013
MASS Design Group's Proposal to Reconstruct Haitian Hospital, Courtesy of MASS Design Group
Courtesy of MASS Design Group

In September 2012, the Haitian Ministry of Economy and Finance called for the reconstruction of the hospital of the State University of Haiti, a medical facility located in the heart of Port-au-Prince that has been operating in ruins since the 2010 earthquake. After the Ministry received large development grants from the US and France, the challenge for designers was to create an earthquake resistant hospital within the $48 million budget, while also phasing the construction to maintain an operational capacity of 500 beds. MASS Design Group was one of the design teams to come up with such a proposal.

For the team's project description, read on.

Iron Market Reconstruction / John McAslan + Partners

01:00 - 29 June, 2013
© Hufton+Crow
© Hufton+Crow

© Hufton+Crow © Hufton+Crow © Hufton+Crow © Hufton+Crow +16

Notre Dame Haiti Cathedral Competition Entry / TABB Architecture

01:00 - 15 April, 2013
Notre Dame Haiti Cathedral Competition Entry / TABB Architecture, Courtesy of TABB Architecture
Courtesy of TABB Architecture

Designed by TABB Architecture, their proposal for the Notre Dame de l’Assomption Cathedral in Port au Prince optimizes resources, producing designed solutions and teaming up for a change. Designing a New Cathedral for Port-au-Prince,not only will imply a beautiful, energy saving, affordable building, but a complete strategy plan to generate the labor force in order to sustain the local economy, teaching people construction techniques to support future needs. More images and architects' description after the break.

World-Class Soccer Stadium Underway in Haiti

01:00 - 2 February, 2013
Courtesy of Project Phoenix
Courtesy of Project Phoenix

Three years have passed since a tremendous earthquake devastated Haiti. The long reconstruction process includes the construction of the country’s first stadium to be completed this year. Partners of Project Phoenix have created plans for Phoenix Stadium, a massive world-class professional soccer stadium soon to be located in Cite Soleil, Haiti. This project developed as a result of the 2012 Clinton Global Initiative when collaboration began between Morad Fareed of Delos and Boby Duval of L’Athletique D’Haiti. The vision is to create a world-class stadium for soccer games as well as many other community functions.

Read more about Phoenix Stadium after the break!

Notre Dame de l’Assomption - National Cathedral Competition Entry / NC-Office

03:00 - 20 January, 2013
Courtesy of NC-Office
Courtesy of NC-Office

Recently destroyed by the 2010 Earthquake, Port-au-Prince’s new design for the National Cathedral is presented as an absolute plain wall of concrete which expresses the true character of the construction. Designed by NC-Office, the concrete material is not only structurally appropriate, but it also produces a somber cool space that absorbs light – forming an architecture of shadows. More images and architects’ description after the break.

USGBC and AIA announce second Architecture for Humanity Sustainability Design Fellow

15:00 - 12 January, 2012

The United States Green Building Council (USGBC) and the American Institute of Architects (AIA) announce Burtland Granvil, AIA, LEED AP as the new Architecture for Humanity Sustainability Design Fellow. Succeeding the first Sustainability Design Fellow, Stacey McMahan, AIA, LEED AP, Granvil will be working directly with the Haitian community at the Architecture for Humanity’s rebuilding center based in Port-au-Prince.

“The earthquake didn’t take as many lives as the poor quality of construction did,” said Granvil. “Architecture for Humanity’s Rebuilding Center in Haiti will help educate and build together with local current and future builders of Haiti…this is the main reason why I joined Architecture for Humanity. I am here with others to work on the long-term approach. Haiti, as well as other post disaster areas, can benefit from this kind of transitional office with this mindset.”

USGBC partners with HOK to design Haiti Orphanage and Children’s Center

13:00 - 12 January, 2012
Aerial © HOK
Aerial © HOK

Marking the two year anniversary of the devastating 7.0 earthquake in Haiti, we would like to share with you the important efforts of Project Haiti – a LEED Platinum orphanage and children’s center that is planned to be built in Port au Prince, Haiti. The project is lead by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) and their official pro-bono design partner, HOK. Project Haiti not only focuses on the children, but also aims to create a “replicable, resilient model for rebuilding” that may serve as a practical teaching tool for the local community. The USGBC motto states, “Every story about green building is a story about people.”

Update: Transitional Shelter Project in Haiti / MICA

15:00 - 8 December, 2011
Exterior Rendering - Courtesy of David Lopez
Exterior Rendering - Courtesy of David Lopez

In the Spring of 2011, the Design|Build studio at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) began researching the various influences impacting the design and construction of transitional shelters used in disaster relief. The research included a review of conditions in Haiti, where a portion of the class travelled to Port-Au-Prince over their Spring Break to check out some of the shelter types being constructed in response to the earthquake that devastated the area back in January of 2010.

Several case studies were investigated, including the Haiti Earthquake. The research was comprehensive. However, the impact of this survey on the outcome of transitional shelter was debatable – there were no “universal solutions”, and there was no panacea that could solve every scenario.

Prototype in Progress: Roof Sheathing - Courtesy of David Lopez Testing Skins - Courtesy of David Lopez Exterior Rendering - Courtesy of David Lopez Section - Courtesy of David Lopez +18

Reconstruction Plan for Haiti / Trans_City Architecture and Urbanism

04:00 - 19 September, 2011
Courtesy of Trans_City Architecture and Urbanism
Courtesy of Trans_City Architecture and Urbanism

Over the last 18 months, Trans_City architecture and urbanism, has developed a comprehensive plan for the reconstruction of Jacmel, Haiti based upon the concept of satellite cities located at the edge of the existing, earthquake-ravaged city center.(A concept developed in accordance with the universal design principals of the Housing Reconstruction Framework of the Haitian Government)

The concept includes an urban masterplan, and a proposal for prefabricated houses, in which the building shell is industrially manufactured in Austria, and finished by local hand workers. In line with the content of the project, the architecture does not attempt to be spectacular. Rather, it is the holistic integration of the many levels of an urban system that makes this project interesting. More images and project description after the break.

Transitional Shelter Design Study in Haiti by MICA

13:00 - 7 May, 2011
© Laurel Cummings
© Laurel Cummings

In March of 2011, a design-build class from the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) received a grant in support of their efforts to design a shelter for disaster relief. The money from the grant was used to travel to Haiti to see conditions on the ground, 14 months after the earthquake that reportedly amassed some 230,000 fatalities.

The goal of the trip was to investigate the myriads of different shelter construction projects still ongoing as Haiti transitions from the emergency tents and tarpaulins that still populate the landscape, into temporary housing for the foreseeable future until permanent housing can be provided through rebuilding.

One of the more ambitious and impressionable projects we came across was the UberShelter.

Harvest City / Tangram 3DS

00:00 - 26 December, 2010

Architects: Tangram 3DS Location: Haiti Project year: 2010 Photographs Tangram 3DS

Clinton Bush Haiti Fund awards $800,000 to Architecture for Humanity

17:00 - 3 December, 2010
Courtesy of Architecture for Humanity
Courtesy of Architecture for Humanity

The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund just awarded $816,472 to Architecture for Humanity for the Haiti Rebuilding Center to support reconstruction and livelihoods in Port-au-Prince, a town that was catastrophically affected by an earthquake at the beginning of the year.  As a result, many large buildings were either severely damaged or destroyed. This fund will not only aid in the rebuilding process, but will benefit thousands of who were suffering since the natural disaster. Additionally, this grant will enable small and growing Haitin businesses to participate in post-earthquake reconstruction and ensure rebuilding incorporates better design and engineering. More information after the break.

Rebuilding a Sustainable Haiti: Symposium Videos

20:00 - 9 July, 2010

A while ago we told you about Rebuilding a Sustainable Haiti, a symposium on planning strategies that can lead to a more socially, environmentally, and economically sustainable future in Haiti, hosted by the Institute for Urban Design on June 4.