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Community Housing Development, Morocco

Part 1 Project 2001
Stephen Last
University of Huddersfield, UK
Morocco is a country where culture still determines the underlying basis of development. Housing revolves around people and families and how they cope with day to day life.

In the historic Heritage City of Fez, housing problems are extremely apparant to both locals and visitors to the area. My aim was to create a development that would not alter the way people have to live but to improve on their way of living.

Carrying out extensive research into housing in Morocco gave me the knowledge and extreme interest in the project's development.

While the site is in the heart of the medina it still maintains strong links to the infrastructure that has developed. The repetition of buiding sizes in the design gave order to the development making construction easier and creating interesting pockets of land for the inhabitants of the area to use.

The process of design on a large scale developed quickly, and designing of single houses and interiors became important.

Sustainability and a strong environmental approach were significant throughout the development and design. The proposal fitted into the Moroccan way of living whilst creating a self-sustainable community development.

Stephen Last

This student has undertaken in depth research into existing housing in Fes which has informed his considered proposals for new courtyard housing for this setting.

This traditional typology has been explored and developed for present and future needs in severeal ways:-

+ House types have investigated the needs of all family groups - smaller units - annexed to more traditional large family units explore the possibility of single parents living adjoining their family rather than within a single household unit.

+ The traditional courtyard response to privacy and environmental cooling has been developed further by proposing retractable roofing (winter can be cold and wet) and systems of sliding screens to provide shade and variable enclosure.

+ Grouped courtyards are introduced which offer more community interaction at ground level - particularly for children.

The student has carefully proposed a range of sustainable responses to new design for a poorer country including approprate orientation and exploitation of local resources.

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