This housing project proposal for Design Against the Elements comes from Triple O Studio in India. It reflects on the scales of the contextual architecture by providing radical innovations in building methods, yet retaining a sensitivity to the context in the spatial organization of the project.
More on this project after the break.
In keeping with the traditional lifestyle of the local people, the architects adapted the modern notion of individual apartments to operate on the concept of community sharing, living and growth. Rather than optimizing on the western concept of privacy and individualism, Triple O Studio approached the spatial organization of the architecture to maximize the social capacity of its residents.
Bamboo and locally available materials will be used for the construction. Local labor, traditional building methodologies and interior layouts and details will be used to understand the local people’s needs and ways of life. Using locally available materials with a local skill-set greatly brings down the cost of the project. The project also reduces the land-filling and excavation to a minimum to preserve the natural resources of the site.
The fundamental principal is to simplify the building design and solutions in terms of construction, services, infrastructure and aesthetics. Thus the services for example, flow along the natural contour of the site to the lowest point where the grey water and black water are treated to be re-used. Using what would be a terrace space on the average building, as the main space for sociability and economic activity also greatly reduces the cost of having to create a new terra firma. The entire terrace is used to harvest rain water, which can be used by the site throughout the year.
Commercial and community activities are positioned at the lower levels along these main arteries to further enhance life on these streets. The position of the streets could over a period of time offer the possibility to connect to other streets around the site such as Paraiso. A staircase links Paraiso street to the new topography created by the structure. This connects the pedestrian scale directly to the site. A single lift is provided for persons with climbing difficulty as well as differently-abled persons to have access to the structure along Paraiso. Since the design is along a single plane, the lift is a efficient addition with could over the period of time prove valuable and lucrative for the site.
Celebrating community and social activity, the project thrives to embrace and enchance this through common spaces distributed all over the site. The common spaces are of all scales from common doors and windows on a unit scale, common movement corridors and balconies of a floor scale, community, social and commercial spaces on the new topography at the top level. Facilities for the community like a large multi purpose hall, play school, parks and grounds, have been provided at suitable locations of the site, considering contour heights, natural forces and urban forces.