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Part 2 Project 2014
Joshua Doyle
Mackintosh School of Architecture, UK
Malmo; Sweden’s third largest city, has a population of just over 300,000 people, of which, 41% are first or second generation immigrants. Despite well publicised rioting, tension between community groups and continued growth of the right wing political party; the Swedish Democrats, the city prides itself on its diverse social make-up and hosts an ‘Introduction Program’ which provides language and cultural courses etc, to help best integrate the new and growing population. Currently, classes take place in community halls/schools, focused in areas of high-immigrant population. However, this structure has been criticised, citing overstretched staff, resultant poor teaching and promotion of urban segregation.

The project aims to create a ‘Central Hub’ for this program and an extension to the growing university campus. In doing so, the short-comings of the current program structure will be improved, and growth through research and education can occur.

The city’s ongoing struggle to integrate the growing immigrant community has been well documented. The proposal develops an alternative attitude towards the notion of ‘integration’; based on psychological value and social acceptance. The thesis questions the ability for architecture to be used as a device to positively affect the population. The Kulturhus is located within the historical centre of the city, allowing it to become an important symbolic object in the urban fabric. Coupled with the democratic nature of its architectural language, the building becomes something that engages with the entire city, elevating awareness of the Introduction Program, and heightening its perceived psychological value, and that of its users.

The resultant architecture aims to promote integration of people in its use, but one which derives from a hyper rational process, whereby the building actively loses authorship and a specific architectural language or style. In doing so, the structure becomes a framework for its users and their activities to occur within, enabling a positive connection to the city. In understanding and re-defining elements of the program, an attitude towards sustainability is developed through the conception of ‘flexibility by design’, whereby the building is literally able to react and evolve to changing demands and the changing demographics of the city.

Joshua Doyle


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