If , like me , you are a fan of great design, then you will appreciate the cleverness on offer at a current exhibition in New York which focuses on the solution of social problems through smart urban design.
This is very practical, low cost architecture using locally available materials.
“The exhibition has 11 projects that have been built or are under construction in nine countries. They vary from a beautiful two-storey school in Rudrapur, Bangladesh, made from moulded earth, to a cable-car system in Caracas, Venezuela, that links people living in crowded barrios to the rest of the city. The projects are managed and financed in various ways, some with help from local governments, others from private donors or backed by an NGO.
The result is a rousing display of ingenuity. A new primary school in Burkina Faso was built from mud bricks made by newly trained villagers. An architectural school affiliated with a university in Alabama is tackling the problem of affordable housing by designing a house that can be built for $20,000. And three architects in Paris have researched an inexpensive way to improve and renovate existing modern housing developments while residents stay in their apartments. In each case, the architect’s approach is like that of a microlender: strategic, modest and mindful of the immeasurable dividends to come.”
Here is a link to the exhibition : Small Scale, Big Change