Port Au Prince: The Latest Architecture and News
“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 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
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.
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.
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.
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.”
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.”
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.
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.