In emerging economies all over the world, massive urbanization leads to an acute need of affordable housing. DASH Global Housing is a special double issue focused on architectural and urban planning models implemented to face this challenge worldwide.
DASH explores the tension between the required mass production and solutions tailored to local circumstances. The emphasis is both on the design of the individual dwelling and the city as a whole. What makes a good, compact dwelling? How can new megacities do justice to the existing social and economic structures, to local production methods and the individual wishes of residents?
Experts from the Netherlands and abroad shed light on this global phenomenon. This issue includes articles by Dick van Gameren, Tom Avermaete and Helen Gyger and interviews with Charles Correa and Go West. The plan documentation includes projects by Jaime Lerner in Angola, PK Das in India and Kamran Diba in Iran as well as historical examples from Great Britain and North America, countries that faced similar problems more than a century ago.
Last year, during a DASH seminar held in Delft in the summer of 2014, Charles Correa held an ardent plea for an architecture of affordable housing that starts from space and openness, rather than bulk and density. In his mind, models for large-scale and affordable housing were all too often based on the maximization of […]
In the past half-century, Indian architects such as Charles Correa, Raj Rewal and Balkrishna Doshi have realized trendsetting affordable housing projects. Uniting tradition and modernity, they enable residents to feel part of a community.
It was not by coincidence that the UN Economical and Social Council decided in 1948, only a few years after the actual foundation of the United Nations as an organization, to start a division on Housing and Town and Country Planning.1 This division was a central component in the larger so-called technical assistance programme that […]
In 1949, Lima’s modernist apotheosis appeared imminent: the Plan Piloto, the city’s first master plan, had applied the techniques of scientific planning to analyse the city at its various scales – from the historical core to the agricultural areas supplying it with food – and to establish a logical course for ‘channeling its urban development’.1 […]
Self-help housing is a timeless social practice to satisfy people’s need for shelter. In broad terms, it can be defined as an activity where citizens, individually or collectively, develop a great deal of self-determination in housing production. It does not mean, however, that it implies complete autonomy or autarky. In effect, self-help housing is far […]
Students of Delft University of Technology have been taking part in the Habitat Design Studio in Ahmedabad since 2010. The design studio is organized annually by Balkrishna Doshi and his firm Vastu Shilpa.1 For two months, the students work on a task related to the explosive growth of the city together with other European students […]
I believe in the cities of India: Like the wheat fields of Punjab, and the coalfields of Bihar, they are a crucial part of our national wealth. They generate the skills we need for development: Doctors, nurses, lawyers, administrators, engineers – not just from the great metropolises, Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata and Chennai, but from a […]
As a pioneer of low-cost housing and a former chairman of the National Commission on Urbanisation, Charles Correa has throughout his long career stressed the crucial relationship between affordable housing, public transport and job location. In the early 1960s, Correa, along with two other colleagues, actively championed this idea and proposed a radical restructuring of […]
In Africa, rapid urbanization and explosive economic growth have led to major building activity in almost all areas: infrastructure, government buildings, housing and so on. Arrestingly, the contribution of Chinese companies is very large. It isn’t uncommon for entire cities to be thrown up by Chinese construction companies and a largely Chinese workforce. How is […]
In 2004, the Integrated Housing Development Programme (IHDP) was introduced in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to reduce the overwhelming housing backlog estimated at about 300,000 housing units and to replace 50 per cent of the dilapidated housing stock. The programme, also known as the ‘Grand Housing Programme’ (GHP), was initiated by the then mayor Arkebe Oqubay […]
Affordable Housing for Developing Cities In emerging economies all over the world, massive urbanization is leading to an urgent, acute need for affordable housing. Numerous plans and programmes have been developed to meet this demand. The plan documentation of this double issue, DASH – Global Housing, includes 16 projects covering a wide range of approaches […]
In 1862, American banker and philanthropist George Peabody, who worked in London, established a trust with the aim of improving the living conditions of London’s poor. The trustees decided to focus on the realization of good and affordable housing for the poorest members of the working class. Victorian England was very aware of the huge […]
Driving east from the southernmost tip of Central Park in New York City, you reach the Queensborough Bridge after about 2.5 km: it connects Manhattan and the borough of Queens. At the foot of the bridge lies New York’s largest social housing project, Queensbridge Houses, built in 1939 and still in use today. The Y-shaped […]
In the nineteenth century, Gourna was a small farming settlement at the foot of the Theban necropolis, near present-day Luxor. By 1945, it had evolved into a village of approximately 7,000 inhabitants that subsisted mainly on ransacking the many tombs dating back to the days of the ancient Egyptians. The Egyptian Department of Antiquities, in […]
Following the Second World War, the United States faced a huge housing shortage. During the war and the preceding Great Depression of the 1930s, housing production had been reduced to fewer than 100,000 new dwellings per year. The sudden influx of soldiers returning from the war led to an acute housing shortage at the end […]
Towards the end of the 1950s, Spain, which was still recuperating from two wars – the Spanish Civil War and the Second World War – was faced with the reconstruction process as well as the planning and implementation of new urban developments. General Franco’s autocratic regime was forced to combine emergency measures to eradicate shantytowns […]
Fria, in Guinea, is a prime example of French late-colonial industrial New Town planning. It was designed and built from scratch between 1956 and 1964 to house both the senior staff and workers of a new bauxite extraction and aluminium production plant owned by the French company Péchiney. The planning and construction of a factory […]
In 1952, a year after Kwame Nkrumah became the first Prime Minister of what was then the British colony of the Gold Coast (now Ghana), the decision was made to build a brandnew harbour as part of the ambitious Volta River Project.1 For the relocation of Tema, a small fishing village that stood in the […]
In 1957, Prime Minister Kwame Nkrumah declared Ghana independent. While Ghana was still a British colony, the decision was made to build Tema Harbour, as part of the Volta River Project.1 Along the way, it was decided that an entire new city in this area was needed. An English planning team began this process in […]
In the mid-1960s, the Greater London Council (GLC) initiated the setup of a programme and design of a New Town for no less than 60,000 people in East London: Thamesmead. After the First World War, the GLC had begun the large-scale demolition of inner-city slums consisting of Victorian back-to-back dwellings built for the working classes. […]
The Caja de Agua development was initially proposed by the Peruvian state housing agency in 1961, as part of its programme to create a new kind of housing project: the Urbanización Popular de Interés Social (UPIS, or Low-Income Social Housing Subdivision). The UPIS offered organized urban development to a minimum standard, substantially below previous government-sponsored […]
During the 1960s and 1970s, the close economic ties between the USA and Iran encouraged many American firms to develop various mega-projects in Iran. In 1966, the Iranian Ministry of Housing asked Victor Gruen to prepare a comprehensive master plan for Tehran in collaboration with his Iranian partner Abdolaziz Farmanfarmaian. Gruen’s urban theory, entitled The […]
Shushtar New Town is one of the most well-known housing projects in contemporary Iranian architecture. Located close to the ancient city of Shushtar in the southwest of Iran, Shushtar New Town follows the traditional urban pattern of Iranian cities with an interwoven urban fabric and (mud)brick as construction material. The project was designed by Kamran […]
In 1964 Charles Correa, Pravina Mehta and Shirish Patel proposed a radical plan to restructure Mumbai (then Bombay) by developing land across the harbour to accommodate the city’s growing population. Now known as Navi Mumbai, this planned city for 2 million people was built to redirect some of the migration away from Mumbai and help […]
Mumbai is both the financial capital of India and its largest city. The city’s planning authorities are faced with the enormous task of accommodating Mumbai’s ever-increasing urban poor population. At present more than half of Mumbai’s 12.5 million inhabitants live in informal settlements or slums. Over the years, several policies have evolved to tackle the […]
Addis Ababa, the capital city of Ethiopia, is one of the 35 fastest-growing cities in the world. According to predictions by UN-Habitat (2015), in this decade the population of Addis will grow from 4.1 to 4.9 million. Even though it is always debatable how slums are defined in Addis Ababa, UN-habitat estimates that 76.4 per […]
Angola was at war from 1961 to 2002. First, there was the Angolan War of Independence (1961-1974), then, after the country’s independence from the colonial rule of the Portuguese, a Civil War ensued in 1975 that lasted until 2002. In both cases, the conflicts mainly took place in the rural countryside, thwarting the development of […]