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Venessa Williams

VENESSA WILLIAMS Architect | Urbanist



I am an architect in training, with some experience in the construction industry in Abuja, Nigeria. I’m most interested in the social aspects of architecture and design i.e. in the responsibility of design in providing solutions for social issues. I believe that design and technology meet towards the creation of a more prosperous future, through the implementation of innovative ideas

Data visualization Participatory design Research Social inclusion Water color painting Reading Craft Travel and exploration



Project Architect

Institute of Advanced Architecture Catalonia

2013-2015 Amborg Global Resources, Abuja

2017-2018 Master in City and Technology

Volunteer Architect

University of Lincoln, UK

June 2015 ACE Charity, Abuja

Intern Architect August 2012 Grid + M Consultants

SKILLS Architecture design Urban design Front-end web development Data Analysis App Design Writing

2015-2016 Master in Architecture (International)

Covenant University, Nigeria 2009-2013 Amborg Global Resources

TOOLS Revit Architecture Sketch Up Adobe Illustrator Adobe Photoshop Adobe Indesign QGIS Phython Bootstrap



Contents Urban Design


Urban Radar Hong Kong: Food City

07 11



Towards Social Connection Creche Proposal Retirement Home

15 19 20

Data Analysis


Food Parallels Food Mobility Twitter Analysis

23 24 25

Social Intervention





Urban Design Urban Radar Collaborators Additional Media Softwares Awards Year

Hong Kong: Food City Collaborators Softwares Year

07 Team Work GQIS, Adobe Illustrator, Bootstrap, App Inventor Designing with Fluxes Best Studio 2018

12 None Sketch Up, Adobe Illustrator 2018


Shanghai, the most populated city in the world!

Monocentric Shanghai, to become polycentric

RedTown neighbourhood located in downtown Shnaghai, has changed 3 times in the past 70 years. 30km radius around the site used for analysis.

Urban Radar Urban radar is a system which helps to reconnect citizens with their neighborhoods. Based on the citizen in the center, walkability as the main form of connection, and local businesses as activity generators, Urban Radar is a powerful tool to reactivate our neighborhoods. It also aids in empowering citizens to identify physical gaps in public space, which helps local administration create faster and better solutions. Today cities grow and change so fast that we, citizens, tend to lose connection with this transition especially in our immediate environments – our neighbourhoods. With increasing population rise, Shanghai plans for decentralization and polycentric spatial restructuring in order to alleviate the urban sprawl. Shanghai is the most populated city in the world, and has the largest rapid transit system. This is especially necessary as a result of the city‘s monocentric nature, where the distance between amenities and functions seems to be ever increasing. In the nieghbourhood scale however, places are not as connected or active in terms of functions. This research ponders on what makes for active neighbourhoods, using Red Town, and its surrounding neighborhood as a reference. By examining the themes of activity in terms of program, and connection within neighborhoods, this project seeks to explore how neighborhoods can become more active by enhancing connection and programs within them. A 3km radius was created around the site forming the extent of further examination. This distance was chosen from studies that had shown that the extent of an average person’s desired walking distance was 3km, which is equivalent to approximately 30 minutes. For the purpose of the research, this distance and time span are regarded as the neighborhood. Activities were analyzed within this radius using geospatial algorithms, line connections were made from the site. From observation, various barriers to walking are identified such as fences, poor pedestrian infrastructure sure as very narrow or non-existent sidewalks, highways and traffic. In conclusion, the physical infrastructure on the site doesnt enhance the most basic form of mobility-walking, and functions around the site are concentrated in only one area

App Interface The application consists of 4(four) key players and parts: data-in, user, local businesses, and public administration. Data is fed into the system from existing social and location intelligence platforms. The users, which consist of individuals and local businesses create the dynamics of supply and demand of programmes. The data that they create is collected by the public administration for the purpose of bringing about physical interventions or policies according to specific needs identified. Local businesses are incentivized to advert using this platform in order to target potential customers according to chosen filtered interests. The government plays the role of regulator observing the dynamics in the different areas and facilitating change based on demand and supply.

Public Space Interface Public space physically adapting to your needs, transport infrastructure adapting to the flow of people as Urban Radar becomes the intelligence of your neighborhood. The project scales up as Urban Radar becomes a part of the physical space through future technologies and ephemeral architecture to create dynamic physical spaces that cater o the changing needs of the people.

App structure

How it works





Select your desired walking distance. 5 minutes, 10, or 30? However long you enjoy walking. Urba Radar uses your geolocation to create a personalized neigbhourhood.

Choose from a wide range of places, services, events and public transport facilities. Urban Radar customizes your digital experience to suit you.

Get newsfeed on the newest places, activities, special offers, updates, events and friends, all tailored to your intersts. Never miss a thing!

Connect with friends through social platforms and build a community thats close to you- both physically and online!

Public space transformation matrix based on walkability factors

Wan Chai Located in the northern part of the city beside the sea. It consists of commercial , residential, administrative and recreational buildings. It is a great attraction for tourists and also connects different parts of the city through the metro and ferry lines.

Hong Kong presently imports about 90% of its food, and is very dependent on surrounding cities for survival. By activating spaces for food production, research and distribution,, how would the perception and experience of food change in the city?

New Layer of Public Space

Existing Public Space

New Productive Public Space

Three major layers are identified in the 1st phase of the development. The ground layer consisting of food parks and research areas, the first floor acting as a connection to the ground and becomes part of the higher floor levels. Pedestrian food bridges, and activity areas that involve the use of organic food such as food markets and restaurants are located across the proposed layers

Hong Kong: Food City Hong Kong’s unique dynamic of public spaces is explored in this project. Most public spaces and pedestrian ways are located underground floor and higher levels, and within buildings. The chosen site is located in Wan Chai, Hong Kong, a metropolitan area. This project proposes to extend the positive space unto higher floors, and connect it to the existing public space in order to activate productivity in the city. It sips into different parts of the city, integrated into a variety of activities and experiences. A major aspect of the project is the connection of the neighbourhood to the adjacent water body. Currently used for transport to other parts of Hong Kong, the sea could become a means for food research and recreation through aquaponics and hydroponics.


Architecture Towards Social Connection Collaborators Additional Media Softwares Awards Year

Creche Proposal Collaborators Softwares Year

Retirement Home Collaborators Softwares Year

15 None Revit, Adobe Photoshop Project Distinction 2016

19 Team Work Revit, Adobe Photoshop 2015

20 Team Work Revit, Adobe Photoshop 2015


Towards Social Connection This project examines the reasons for disconnection in Jahi, a small community in Abuja, and proposes principles that explore how virtual connections enhance the connection between physical spaces.

This concept entails that both the physical and digital contexts would have the ability to be easily converted to the other. Through interaction between the two types of spaces, the virtual and physical work together to allow for more interactive spaces

Important Landmarks

Existing roads and paths

Existing site structures

Green areas

Green areas

This suggests that virtual connections can be used to help connect non prominent areas to those that are more prominent. By utilizing structures, which are known for thier ease and speed of access, connection and interaction disconnected communities are able to reach out to places beyond thier imposed borders , and in time, become more prominent and connected to the society

Building Types

Surrounding Uses

Main Roads

Site Location

Noisy Zone

Available area for expansion

In providing a solution to the problem of social disconnection and community isolation, a radio station has been proposed, from which information on health care, wellbeing and lifestyle would be broascasted

Proposed radio staion, Jahi

It is intended to serve as a platform through which the community can be heard and acknowledged, with little restrictions to time and place As there is currently no rdaio station dedicated to healthcare and wellbeing in Abuja, establishing one in Jahi would create a landmark for the community, empowering it as it becomes even more prominent in the city.

Existing radio staions

Analysis shows that: All radio stations in the city are located in the center. This affects the type of information broadcasted across the city.

Ground Floor Scale 1:750

1 - Entrance Lobby 2 - Library Lounge 3 - Reference Section 4 - Children’s Section 5 - Staff Work Room 6 - Storage 7 - Radio Lounge 8 - Radio Open Office 9 - Public Recording Studio 10- Control Room 11- Office 12- Office 13- Elevator Shaft 14- Utility 15- Disabled Toilet 16- Male Toilet 17- Female Toilet 18- Courtyard 19- Tech Classroom 20- Tech Classrom 21- Tech Classroom 22- Tech Hub

23- Meeting Room 24- Radio Open Office 25- Office 26- General Control Room 27- Radio Conference Room 28- Radio Open Office 29- Radio Meeting Room 30- Library Meeting Room 31- Library Meeting Room 32- Library Study Room 33- Library Meeting Room

Existing Site

Third Floor

Available area for development

Public area

Second Floor

Private area

Design Development Block First Floor Market Square connects to market lane Library and radio connected as public spaces for learning and self expression Tech classrooms connected to existing school blocks

Ground Floor

First Floor Scale 1:750



Tech School

Arrows represent design formation of building. In line with the concept of prominence, parts of the building are extruded outwards to create the effect of recession and protrusion

General Utilities Market Square

34- Balcony 35- Meeting Room 36- Meeting Room 37- Library Study Area 38- Library Quiet Room 39- Office 40- Office

Administrative Building

Existing Classroom Blocks

Second Floor Scale 1:750

Proposed Building

41- Conference Room 42- Dressing Room 43- Meeting Point

Third Floor Scale 1:750


Open Auditorium

Site Plan Scale 1:1500

Section AA

View 01 Scale 1:500

View 03 Scale 1:500

View 02 Scale 1:500

View 04 Scale 1:500

Section BB

First Floor View 01

View 02

Section CC

View 04

View 03

Ground Floor

Ground Floor Section DD

View from market lane

View from classroom block

View from outdoor auditorium

Creche Proposal The development of a housing estate in Abuja required the design of a creche for the intending residents. It was was important for the building to be flexible, to allow for future growth, as well as cater to the needs of the new community. The design consists of classrooms with extensive windows, which serve to extend the classrooms to the outdoors, child lounges and play areas. The facade is brightly colored, with long horizontal wooden sun screens, which add character to the building, its architecture works to enhance the function of the creche as a place for learning, gowth and play.

Ground Floor Plan

Front Elevation

Right Elevation

Rear Elevation

Left Elevation

First Floor Plan North-east perspective

Front perspective

Retirement Home The contemporary-styled residential duplex is located in theupscale district, Maitama Abuja. It is made up of five bedrooms and an adjoining staff quarters. The building was designed to suit the clients’, a retired couple, who intend to house thier many grandchildren through the years. Spaces flow easily from one to another, large windows are used through out most spaces, balconies and patios serve as transition areas between internal and external environments, with an intersting view of a pool and yard from the living spaces.

Ground Floor Plan

First Floor Plan

Cross Section

Left Elevation

Rear perspective

Right Elevation

Front Perspective


Data Analysis Food Parallels Collaborators Softwares Year

Food Mobility Collaborators Softwares Year

Twitter Analysis Collaborators Softwares Year

23 None QGIS 2018

24 Team Work QGIS, Spatialite, Python 2018

25 Team Work Python, QGIS, Adobe Illustrator 2015


Food Parallels Using the Good-enough-to-eat dataset by Oxfam, UK, this food index consists of 125 countries, showing the best and worst places in the world to eat and get food. The uneven distribution of food in the world is one of the most striking observations from the general index and data sets. Of the countries accessed, Netherlands ranks highest as the “Best Place to Eat � in the world, and Chad as the Worst“ and Spain ranks as number 13.

Unhealthy Eating

Food Quality

more developed countries have higher levels of obesity and diabetes

Europe seems to have the most variety of food types

Have enough to eat

Food Distribution

South Saharan Africa and Aisa record a high level of underweight and undernourished childern

world polarity in food distribution leaves some parts with excess and others without enough.

Can afford to eat

Good enough to eat (summary)

food price levels rank higher in developing countries

Food Mobility Focusing on the city of Shanghai, and through the lens of food, this project utilizes datasets of restaurant locations, prices, reviews, cuisines, opening hours, delivery times, supermarkets, etc and others relating to food, in understanding the city. These data were compiled and manipulated in Spatialite, using SQL queries and QGIS in order to visualize the current food situation in the city in relation with mobility. Transport modal share

Food “modal� share

Food intensity along roads in the city center

This analysis seeks to find how the metro system, specifically line 2 which cuts across the city, intersects with food in Shanghai.

Grid showing restaurants, fast food and cafes

Heatmap showing food establishments with higher prices

Buffer of 750m along metro lines. Shows Line 2 with highest food intensity



Food diversity along Line 2. Eastern Cuisine Western Cuisine Metro Line 2 Metro entrances

A Voronoi analysis was done to find the more accurate catchment area of each metro station along the center of line 2 (five stations). Different indicators were used to analyze each metro station. The derived datasets were visualized using basic bar charts and box plots in order to identify the differences among the metro stations.


4 Food price along Line 2. Cheap resturants (< 150yen) Expensive resturants (>150 yen) Metro Line 2 Metro entrances

Online comments

Eastern cuisine Western cuisine

Catchment Populataion


Food price along Line 2. Price

Catchment population Peak passengers Offpeakpassengers

Resturants Cafes Fast Food Metro entrances

Twitter Analysis This project seeks to find the relationship between the physical and digital aspects of the city of Barcelona. Twitter database (from November 2017-February 2018) represents the digital layer of the city for this project, while the physical includes population, income, airbnb, hotels, and tripadvisor data (local and tourists).

Who uses twitter in Barcelona?

We start off by breaking down the different elements that make up twitter -User Info, Topic, Time, and Place. We try to answer the questions; Who uses twitter? What are they saying? When do they tweet? Where do they tweet from?

What do people talk about on twitter? To deduce this, we created a dictionary of 600 of the most occuring words in our twitter database and assigned each a topic under 11 sub-topics

When do people tweet?

Twitter by Month

Twitter by Day

Twitter by Hour

Where do people tweet from in Barcelona? On average, only 5% of tweets are geolocated. From the chart and map below, it shows that tweets about city and personal tweets are the most geolocated categories.

A correlation matrix was used to find the relationship between the physical and digital layers of Barcelona. A correlation is a statistical technique used to measure and describe the strength and direction of the relationship between two variables. By using the physical and digital indices as variables, the relationship between different elements in the digital and physical space are read. In the case of the entire city of Barcelona, the chart on the right shows a weak correlation between these two layers. But what happens if we zoom in a bit deeper and consider the different districts of the city instead of just the city as a whole?

By placing weak correlated and strong correlated side by side, Barcelona seems to be split right in the middle. Although this analysis was done with a limited amount of data- the digital representing only a short time span, and the physical being more dynamic than the index used-how could this method of urban analysis change the way cities are planned? What other insights to the city can we deduce by inputting other dynamic variables over longer periods of time?


Social Intervention Veus Collaborators Additional Media Softwares Year

29 Team Work Unity App Developer, Adobe Illustrator 2018


Municipality Elections Surveys Digital Platforms Neighbourhood Association Facebook Groups

There are several options for citizens to participate in urban decision making. By analysing them we discover important features in which some perform better than others, therefore, none of the common means of participation perform excellent in all analysed aspects. This highlights the necessity to think of a means that seeks to cover efficiently all qualities inherent in the existing systems.

How does it work? First you log in, entering your data about gender, what agegroup you belong and whether you work or live nearby or just pass by; after, there’s three major screens you can acces: The map, where you can check what projects are available to vote around; a newsfeed site, where you can have an insight about the latest released projects and which shows other information such as it’s popularity (people already having taken part in the participation process); and the participative section. This consists of 3 main steps: info – showcasing 3 different projects for the site -, voting and adding elements to the voted project.

Veus: AR Application Veus is an app for participatory design process that uses AR to allow a seamless and constant dialogue between the municipality and the citizens.Based on the principle of first seeing and then speaking out your opinion, it enables municipalities to convey ideas or projects for specific areas and gives citizens the opportunity to vote them and to add elements to the design which they think would improve the design of the public space. Veus is designed to convey citizens information on urban design projects and ask for opinions and suggestions.

The “info” screen displays the features of the 3 available projects by using animations, icons and sounds to showcase the impact and effect of the proposal. No rendering is shown, since it usually is a very powerful tool in expressing a final image, but it can often be misleading.

The data generated by Veus’ users combined with data owned by the municipality is a very powerful tool for the municipality to understand citizen’s needs and the logics behind them.

The “add” screen offers citizens the possibility to add elements to the project that they have voted for. The catalogue of items consists of generic images displaying elements such as benches, picnic tables, trees, playgrounds, sport areas, trees, urban gardens, etc. Citizens can select them and drag and drop them into a specific place of the area.



Portfolio_ Venessa Williams  

Contains my CV and work from 2016-2018. Enjoy!

Portfolio_ Venessa Williams  

Contains my CV and work from 2016-2018. Enjoy!