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Evason Spa | dwp (design worldwide partnership)

Designed by international firm dwp (design worldwide partnership)Evason Spa is a spa center located in Hua Hin, Thailand. In an increasingly complex and technologically oriented society, dwpbrings a high level of technical competence and a thorough appreciation of the objectives of the client to each healthcare project.

We believe that an investment in life-enhancing healthcare design is beneficial to clients, healthcare professionals and patients alike.

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dwp has gained a significant reputation in this field; not only for its in-depth knowledge and experience of the special requirements demanded by this project type, but also for its ability to design efficient and cost-effective buildings with tight schedules and budgets.

ProjectEvason SpaArchitectdwp | design worldwide partnership | http://www.dwp.com/Location: Hua Hin, ThailandTypologyHealth care | Spa

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Cob building pictoral (Part 1) (by housealivevideos)

Part 1 of a 3-part pictorial about cob and natural building. This is not a “how to” but provides an overview about cob building and lots of inspirational pictures to encourage you to get started! Visit www.housealive.org for more information.

Read “The handsculpted house” by Ianto Evans, Michael Smith and Linda Smiley.

Part 2

Part 3

Lagos is Africa’s largest city. Next to the sea, it experiences regular flooding from tropical rains, and water is a way of life for many residents, particularly those in Makoko. People living in this fishing community have built their homes on the water and trade on it. But the area has just one primary school. Nigerian architect Kunle Adeyemi is hoping to build another – one that floats on the water and is powered by solar panels.

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Nigeria floats idea for life on the water

Climate change and population growth is making Lagos planners think more about exploiting its waters, but will it mean people living on the water will be moved on?

For generations, the people of Makoko have lived in houses perched on stilts above the lagoon that prompted Portuguese colonialists to christen this city Lagos centuries ago. Residents navigate dugout canoes through a maze of brown waterways that spread far beneath the longest bridge in Africa, which connects the creek-filled islands of Lagos with its crowded mainland.

Some see the community balanced on water as an engineering feat that is almost as impressive as the bridge that passes by it, albeit less planned. An estimated 250,000 people live in Makoko; they trade, shop and build aquafarms on the lagoon’s waters.

“Like everybody passing over [Lagos city’s] Third Mainland Bridge, I became interested in Makoko,” said Kunle Adeyemi, a Nigerian architect who is based in the waterside city of Amsterdam. While Makoko is largely self-sufficient, the entire community is served by a single primary school. Adeyemi’s visit to the area in 2009 gave him the idea of building a floating settlement – starting with a floating school (video).

As climate change pushes up sea levels and coastal erosion chips away at the shoreline, thousands of homes built along west Africa’s densely populated coast are washed away each year. Each year, the tropical rains that lash Lagos overwhelm the colonial-era drainage system. During rainy seasons, fishermen sometimes canoe across roads sunk under floodwaters.

How Africa’s largest city reacts to the encroaching waters is a crucial test case for other countries.

“The big question is what will Lagos look like in 50 years’ time? Will we have a city that integrates water into its design, or will we have a city that tries to keep water out at any cost?” said Janthomas Hiemstra, deputy country director for the UN Development Fund, as he stood on a floating platform like the one on which the proposed Makoko school could be built.

It a question authorities are grappling with in the main city of a country whose current growth rate could push its population to 300 million within a quarter of a century. “A floating school like this could be part of a vision for Lagos,” said Hiemstra.

Amid a torrential downpour, children and adults alike leap on to the platform, which is made of locally sourced wood and kept afloat by bright blue recycled plastic barrels. “We looked at many ways of creating a building that would still be functional regardless of the water levels, and we decided the building should float,” said Adeyemi, as the platform swayed gently in the waters.

Under the plan, 16 such podiums would be lashed together to form the ground floor of the school. The proposed three-storey triangular structure would address some of the infrastructure problems that plague the communities in Lagos that live on the water, said Adeyemi. Solar panels would provide renewable energy; the sloping roof would enable rainwater to be harvested efficiently, and a waste-to-energy system would solve sanitation problems.

Adeyemi added: “The building can be adapted for other uses, such as homes or hospitals. Ultimately, it’s a vision that can be used to sustainably develop [African] coastal communities.”

But the government is reluctant to embrace the idea of making permanent the dozen of settlements that crowd the city’s waters. Periodic attempts to evict their inhabitants have been unsuccessful.

“The fact remains that [the Makoko] waterbody is the main natural drainage facility for Lagos state. People living there endanger not just themselves but the general citizens of the state,” said the city’s state planning commissioner, Toyin Ayinde. “We’re trying to see how [water communities] can keep some activities on the water, but the idea is for them to live on the land. There’s more to our shoreline protection than just putting cities on water.”

Nevertheless, the floating school project has received tentative backing from local authorities, and Ayinde admitted that proposals for houses on water could still be part of a wider vision.

Not everyone living on the water wants to leave. A Makoko fisherman, Boyo Shemede, said: “I was born on these waters. If we leave the water, we will still be alive but we will never be truly happy. What we really want is for the government to help us with sanitation.”

In recent years, Lagos has begun exploiting its waters. More than 1 million Lagosians now use some form of water transport each month, and the city’s waterfront ministry has welcomed private investment in projects, such as the construction of Eko Atlantic city, on the southern tip of Lagos. Unlike Makoko, the new district, which is being constructed in the wealthier part of the city, will have modern water, sanitation, transport and security systems.

Each day, workers fill a strip of reclaimed land with sand pumped from the ocean floor. Eko Atlantic’s developer plan to turn the reclaimed land into a gleaming new city, surrounded by an 8km protective wall against the Atlantic surge. City officials say its tree-lined streets would house 250,000 people, roughly the same number as Makoko. “It’s the first time a project with reclaimed land has been done on this scale. Nobody knows if it will actually work,” said an official. “On the other hand, if it works, it shows that Lagos can be a waterfront city and a beautiful city at the same time.”

Meanwhile, the UNDP remains keen on getting plans for the Makoko floating settlement off the ground.

“What’s happening at the moment – and this is a phenomenon not only in Nigeria – is that a lot of governments are trying to do something about the effects of sea erosion. That is reactive, and that’s good,” said Hiemstra. “But on the other hand, that money and effort could be better directed if we knew what we were after in the long term, rather than just dousing the fires.

"The future of Lagos has to incorporate [water-based] communities; you cannot just think them away.”

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Kunle Adeyemi Designs a Solar-Powered Floating School for the Flood-Prone Coastline of Nigeria | Inhabitat - Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building

by Morgana Matus, 02/08/13

For the community of Makoko of Lagos, Nigeria life on the water is nothing new. Prone to flooding, residents have dealt with encroaching waters for generations by building houses on stilts and using canoes as their main source of transport. Now, with the threat of sea level rise from climate change, and developers who want to tear the community down, Makoko is in a state of uncertainty. Nigerian-born architect Kunle Adeyemi has a vision for the city of 250,000 people that involves constructing a group of floating structures that have better access to sanitation, fresh water, and waste disposal. His first endeavor would be to build a three-story school held afloat by plastic drums. 

After a trip to Makoko in 2009, Adeyemi was inspired to improve upon the main primary school that served the waterside settlement. His design, which will accommodate 100 students, will use 256 plastic drums to keep it resting on top of the water, and the frame will be constructed with locally-sourced wood. Electricity would be provided by solar panels on the roof, and rainwater harvesting would help operate toilets. The school is nearly finished, and the entire cost should total around $6,250.

Projects like Adeyemi’s could be the beginning of a trend followed throughout coastal Africa. “The building can be adapted for other uses, such as homes or hospitals. Ultimately, it’s a vision that can be used to sustainably develop [African] coastal communities.” said Adeyemi. While the government is reluctant to permanently establish the dozens of settlements in the city’s waters, tentative backing has been given by local officials. In recent years, nearby cities in Lagos have been reclaiming the water using land pumped from the ocean floor. Adeyemi’s strategy would work with the propensity for storms and rising tides to flood the area instead of fighting against them, setting a possible example for future developments in the country.

+NLÉ Architecture

Via Co.EXIST

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Floating Schools Would Enable Students to Adapt to Flood-Prone Areas in Nigeria

For the community of Makoko of Lagos, Nigeria, life on the water is nothing new. Prone to flooding, residents have dealt with encroaching waters for generations by building houses on stilts and using canoes as their main source of transport. Nigerian-born architect Kunle Adeyemi has a vision for the city of 250,000 people that involves constructing a group of floating structures that have better access to sanitation, fresh water, and waste disposal. His first endeavor would be to build a three-story school held afloat by plastic drums.

After a trip to Makoko in 2009, Adeyemi was inspired to improve upon the main primary school that served the waterside settlement. His design, which will accommodate 100 students, will use 256 plastic drums to keep it resting on top of the water, and the frame will be constructed with locally-sourced wood. Electricity would be provided by solar panels on the roof, and rainwater harvesting would help operate toilets. The school is nearly finished, and the entire cost should total around $6,250.

Projects like Adeyemi’s could be the beginning of a trend followed throughout coastal Africa. “The building can be adapted for other uses, such as homes or hospitals. Ultimately, it’s a vision that can be used to sustainably develop [African] coastal communities.” said Adeyemi. While the government is reluctant to permanently establish the dozens of settlements in the city’s waters, tentative backing has been given by local officials. In recent years, nearby cities in Lagos have been reclaiming the water using land pumped from the ocean floor. Adeyemi’s strategy would work with the propensity for storms and rising tides to flood the area instead of fighting against them, setting a possible example for future developments in the country.

+ NLÉ Architecture

Via Co.EXIST

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Nigerian Architect, Kunle Adeyemi Brings Hope to Makoko Slum with the Floating School Project

By Adeola Adeyemo

Some days ago, BN brought to you a story on the harsh reality faced by thousands of families living on the murky waters of Makoko slum in Lagos. The story which was inspired by a UK Daily Mail feature highlighted the difficulties of families fighting for survival on a sea of festering filth. The pictures showed the terrible living conditions the families have to cope with. And to compound their problems, they live in fear of having their homes demolished.

But in the midst of this despair, an architect, Kunle Adeyemi hopes to bring some light. He plans to build a three-story school out of 16 floating platforms lashed together, capable of holding 100 students and teachers in the iconic slum.

Mr. Adeyemi who works both in Lagos and in Amsterdam, Holland told Sun Herald that the project involves building the platforms out of locally sourced wood and empty plastic drums, then using wooded beams to build a structure that would have a common area for children to play on as its base, with two floors for classrooms above it. The building would also include bathroom facilities, something lacking in a slum where most relieve themselves by hovering over the water.

“If the people don’t live here, they’ll live somewhere else. What we’re only trying to do is offer them a better solution,” he said.

The school project will cost about $6,250, Mr Adeyemi said and has received support from international groups and government officials. One of which is Heinrich Boell Stiftung which is partnering with Mr Adeyemi’s company NLÉ to make it a reality.

Curious to see what a floating school would look like, I visited the Heinrich Boell Stiftung website where I saw the confirmation of the partnership and a picture of the prototype of the floating school.

The Heinrich Boell Stiftung and its partner organisation NLE, led by the Nigerian architect Kunle Adeyemi, rather believe that people will cope better with the risks of erosion and flooding if they incorporate the water into their daily life instead of trying to dominate it. Just as the informal fishing community “Makoko”, located in the lagoon waters of Lagos, has been doing it for over hundred years: It is a community without any government support or infrastructure, the traditional authorities are responsible for the social organisation of the over 100,000 members. They live in wooden houses on stilt, transportation is by canoe only.

Although the people of Makoko have their own schools, it is ill-equipped. Mr Adeyemi hopes that the floating school project would make the area less of an eyesore and would rid it of the constant smell of smoke and decay.

One of my major concerns was the risk of rising water levels and its effect on the school. However, the architect noted that “Particularly in view of climate change, there’s a need to adapt buildings. We decided to use this as a prototype for developing something whether the water level rises or goes down, the building responds to that.”

It would be such a relief to have improved educational facilities at Makoko.

Photos of the current state of schools and education in Makoko

Photos of the proposed floating school at Makoko

Children playing on one of the platforms


Photo Credit: Heinrich Boell Stiftung

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