New Neighborhood

A Plan for Affordable Housing

Cartagena, Colombia 

MIT IAP Architectural Workshop | 01/2017

Partnership: Mario Santo Domingo Foundation, MIT LCAU

Advisor: Prof. Adele Santos, Debora Mesa

Project team: Alexander, Daniel Marshall, Justin Lim, Zain Karsan, Giovanni Bellotti, Mackenzie Muhonen, Max, Maya, Manuela Uribe

An exceptionally well-resolved project, a richness of interpretation and a level of detail ripe for implementation.

from the regional jury from 2017 LafargeHolcim Awards

This workshop was part of a broader research collaboration with Mario Santo Domingo Foundation that has been examining urban resilience for low-income housing. The project were awarded an Acknowledgment prize in the Latin America section in 2017 LafargeHolcim Awards competition. Weaving together working and living spaces into a neighborhood, the project encourages community building, the livelihood of its inhabitants, and social interaction within an urban plan designed to maximize shading.

Branch Strategy
Branch Strategy
Branch Strategy
Branch Strategy

Design Challenges

 

1. Socioeconomic

The predominant model in Colombia is to build housing estates without supporting services. Often at distance from jobs or facilities the inhabitants of these communities are prone to crime and are stressed socially.Our interest in working with Fundacion Mario Santo
Domingo was their reputation for building “habitats” rather than the housing only developments. Their model known as Integrated Development for Sustainable Communities, DINCS, ensures that housing is built with needed infrastructure such as schools, child -care centers, health services and recreation. The development of community and a social infrastructure is considered key to creating livable and supportive community life.

 

2. Climate

The climate in Cartagena can reach up to 29°C (84°F) with 94% humidity (in average) during the hottest month and the current neighborhoods are not planned to take advantage of wind flows or to create shade.
The current houses perform really poorly and interior temperatures are unusually hot especially at night. Lack of insulation for roofs, limited cross-ventilation, no roof overhangs insure these uncomfortable conditions.
We engaged in a rigorous assessment of the existing conditions comparatively, including the walled city, and set our criteria for the site planning and housing design. Environmental analysis was made of proposed streets, community spaces and housing typologies to ensure self-shading, and to optimize natural ventilation.

Design Solutions

 

​Existing Housing Typology Study | How to Maximize the Shading

Informal settlements, historic urban fabric, current social housing types are simulated with environmental analysis tools to study their self-shading ratio. From the simulation, one significant finding for massing design strategy is to make the urban fabric more compact. Second take-away from the study is to implement more overhanging structures to maximize the self-shading.

Branch Strategy
Branch Strategy

Self-shading Rate Analysis | Overhanging vs No-overhanging

Software Environment:Ladybug and Diva, in the software environment of Grasshopper in Rhino)

With the same layout, we compare the difference of shading impacts with and without overhanging roofs. The simulation proves that, just by extending the roof for 1 meter, the self-shading rate can be increased by 1.5% percent. If the site is 400,00 square meter, it means that we can increase 600 square meter nice shaded outdoor space for the neighborhood.

Branch Strategy

Self-shading Rate Analysis | Roof Type

Software Environment:Ladybug and Diva, in the software environment of Grasshopper in Rhino)

Knowing that overhanging would increase the shading for exterior spaces, we study different angle of the roof and compare the shading results. Twin-roof morphology is most cost-efficient in self-shading per area of roof extension materials. As a result, the neighborhood's house roof is suggested to implement twin-roof shape.

Branch Strategy
Branch Strategy

Wind Analysis | Layout Orientation Study

Software Environment:Ladybug and Diva, in the software environment of Grasshopper in Rhino)

By rotating the layout in Rhino with Ecotect Energy Plus plugin, we find that align alleys to the most frequent wind directions (15 degree to the north) can shape the best corridor for natural blazing. Meanwhile it is also the best angle to take advantage of self-shading.

Branch Strategy

© 2022 by Waishan QIU