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TACKLING HOMELESSNESS IN URBAN ENVIRONMENTS: AN ARCHITECTURE OF CONCILIATION TO DEAL WITH A GROWING CRISIS

ABIDJAN, CÔTE DIVOIRE ORIANE YEBOUE-KOUAME [M.arch]


TABLE OF CONTENTS

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INTRODUCTION P8-19

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BACKGROUND HISTORY OF CÔTE DIVOIRE + The independence of Cote d’Ivoire + The post-independence era + Urbanization in Cote d’Ivoire: Abidjan and city regulations + Housing crisis, consequences on the population The development of new types of housing Internal obstacles within the authorities in charge + Policies and Role of the Ivorian government in this crisis The role of architecture in this housing crisis

+ Abstract + In East and South Africa: Nairobi, Kenya Maputo, Mozambique + In Latin America: Jalisco, Mexico + In Europe : Copenhagen, Denmark

P12-29

P30-39

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CASE STUDIES


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BIBLIOGRAPHY

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03 SUMMARY P20-23

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CONCLUSION P49-50

PROJECT FRAMEWORK + Project site: specific locations in the city and selection criteria + Project rationale: The Needs of the population + Project Short/Long Term Objectives + Design Program P41-51

P52-55


INTRODUCTION

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Homelessness is an ongoing issue in the world today, as the size of the cities continues to grow. According to the Organization for Economic Development , and co-operation (OECD) which promotes policies to improve the socioeconomic wellbeing of populations around the world since 1950, 70 per cent of the world population which was about 2.5 billion people was spread out across rural areas. As of today 7.6 billion people, about 55 percent of the world population, are concentrated in urban centers1. While this number is increasing around the world so is the number of homeless evaluated at 100 million, while more than a billion of the people in the world live in precariously.2 The homeless population varies from employed citizens to children, their status affects their ability to be active members of our society. These individuals become then marginalized and, incapable to break the cycle of their situation. More than 2 out of 10 people in the world are homeless or lack proper housing3. In response to this crisis many organizations are working to solve this issue,but the results are small in comparison with the crisis.

To study a critical situation of homelessness, this research will look at the lifestyle of these individuals in the city of Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. Over the years the city became known for sheltering 20 percent of the overall population, but also immigrants coming from Sub-Saharan countries, and from all over the world.3La Côte d’Ivoire is a francophone country located in West Africa that went through a rapid process of urbanization after its independence in 1960, attracting many immigrants is what is now the economic capital Abidjan.

In 2003 the capital generated 18 per cent of the national employment, and 50 per cent of the gross domestic product.4 While the population in the city increased rapidly its constant expansion created a housing crisis. The need for housing is increasing, as well as the cost of living. While analyzing the case of this city it will also be needed to clarify and/or redefine the definition of homelessness in these precise conditions.


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INTRODUCTION

As there are no definitions of homeless in Cote d’Ivoire we may refer to the definition provided by the United Nations in 2004. Their definition distinguished two different types of homelessness. The term primary homelessness (or rootlessness) refers to those living in the streets without a shelter that would fall within the scope of living quarters; secondary homelessness refers to persons with no place of usual residence who move frequently between various types of accommodations (including dwellings, shelters, and institutions for the homeless or other living quarters). This category includes persons living in private dwellings with no real address attached to their identity5. The housing crisis in Abidjan has lead the citizen with lower-income to construct spontaneous housing, forming what have come to be known as “bidonvilles” are also referred to as slums. These illegal settlements are being progressively destroyed by the government, and are often located in areas at risk of flooding.

Similarly, an important part of the population that is unable to afford housing closer to their place of work tend to squat buildings that are abandoned. Although the government of Côte d’Ivoire has developed urbanization policies to deal with illegal urban settlements and squatter neighborhoods the problem continues to grow. Various regulations were also created since 1977 to ameliorate the quality of housing for the poor citizens of Abidjan.6 This analysis will take a further look at the problem and the direct relation between poverty, and urban areas. As poverty is a multidimensional issue so is homelessness, and this study will examine those living in illegal, and highly precarious housing with an attention to the youth, and the citizens with informal jobs and lower income. Solving this issue may include the creation of independent housing, and temporary structures while taking in consideration the socio-economic, and environmental impact.


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In conclusion, I am studying the homeless crisis in Abidjan, which will include also a study of the lifestyle of the homeless in the city, because I want to understand and assess their needs, and provide an answer to the question of how can architecture change the attitude towards them, and help their reintegration into society.


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01 BACKGROUND History of Cote d’Ivoire


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+ The independence of Côte d’Ivoire The republic of Cote d’Ivoire is a former French colony located in West Africa. This country was known largely know before its independence in 1960 as a plantation economy mostly based on products such as coffee, cacao and, pineapples. After its independence, its continuous growth in the sub-Saharan region attracted many migrants from neighboring countries. Between 1960 and 1975 the population of Cote d’Ivoire doubled and went from 3.6 to 7.5 million. 7 At the time this tremendous growth in population was apparent also in the inner cities with an increase of about 7 per cent annually. According to the United Nation development program (PNUD) working around the world to reduce inequalities, the dense level of urbanization went from 31.8 per cent in 1975 to 47 per cent in 1997 and was estimated at about 55.7 per cent in 2015. 8These numbers made Côte d’Ivoire one of the most promising economies in the SubSaharan region, and attracted a lot of investors and open the doors to new opportunities for its inhabitants.

Around that same time Yamoussoukro, the second largest city of the country became the administrative and political capital while Abidjan located a few hours away became the economic center of the country. At the time this tremendous growth in population was apparent also in the inner cities with an increase of about 7 per cent annually. According to the United Nation development program (PNUD) working around the world to reduce inequalities, the dense level of urbanization went from 31.8 per cent in 1975 to 47 per cent in 1997 and was estimated at about 55.7 per cent in 2015. 8These numbers made Côte d’Ivoire one of the most promising economies in the Sub-Saharan region, and attracted a lot of investors and open the doors to new opportunities for its inhabitants. Around that same time Yamoussoukro, the second largest city of the country became the administrative and political capital while Abidjan located a few hours away became the economic center of the country.


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BACKGROUND

+The Post-Independence Era Unfortunately, despite such a promising beginning the history of the country was often highly tainted by corruption and multiple civil wars, which later lead to an economic crisis. After the death of the first president FélixHouphouët-Boigny the country went under a big period of ministerial instability with Konan Bedié, Robert Guéï, and recently Gbagbo. This history of political instability led the country into a long lasting economic crisis. During these period the level of poverty raised of 40 per cent in 2002, and 46 per cent in 20159.The country also continued to attract immigrants from Europe, Burkina Faso, Mali Guinea, Ghana Togo and various other countries. Today the population is evaluated at about 20 million with a significant part of the population made of migrants . As a result, the demography of the country is increasingly and, about 20 per cent of the overall population is non-Ivorian (European, Lebanese, Vietnamese or west African)10. Although this affected the development of the country it also increased the movement of populations from rural, and regional areas to the economic center of Abidjan.

+ Urbanization in Cote d’Ivoire: Abidjan and city regulations The city of Abidjan is located on the southeast side of the country, on the Gulf of Guinea, in the Ébrié Lagoon. In 1951, the construction of the Canal of Vridi was also completed its autonomous port making it an important regional hub, and establishing it as the economic center of the country. Furthermore, the city offered a major railway system connected to the northern region of the country, and the Niger valley where is located an important source of water. Shortly after the independence a lot of new infrastructure was built in the city to support the agricultural, and commercial exchange with the rest of the world. Additionally, the urban plan of the city was modified in 1946 based off the proposal of the French architect Daniel Badani to reflect that goal. His studies suggested three major transformations: first the relocation of factories from the residential areas to specific and industrial zones located by the port of PetitBassam Island in the southern area, near the Ébrié lagoon and finally the banco area.


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The dotted areas represent the major concentrations of illegal settlements. The black lines outline the primary zone and of Urbanization, and the orange lines outlines the secondary zone. late 90’s

Credits : World Bank


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BACKGROUND

Secondly, Badani also recommended the implementation of an international airport at the city’s southeastern extents; thirdly an expansion of the existing residential areas to accommodate the increase of the population.11 In the end, the green lungs of the city the Banco area, was too large of a challenge and, remained the same. In 1952 Abidjan’s population tripled.12 After the development of the city post colonialism and its economic take off with the canal, two important changes can be identified in development of the city. Due to the major population growth, the urban area expanded again to follow the need of the city and its inhabitants. The expansion of the city into two new districts Abobo, and Yopougonplateau of banco - that later became themajor communes of the city.

+ Housing crisis, consequences on the population The implementation of new type of housing Despite the remodeling of the city the housing crisis hit the city. In 1995 of the two and a half million people currently living in the metropolis of Abidjan, various studies indicate that 400,000-500,000 live in 72 precarious settlements. Today this number represent 20 % of the population of Abidjan.13 Due to their lack of means these population found themselves in charge of the construction of spontaneous housing with no real building skills. These habitat are made from reclaimed materials like wood planks, metal sheets and whatever can be found around. However, the lack of materials does not limit the variety of these structures; most of them are individual houses, and the rest are mostly shared houses, rooms and designed like studio apartment.


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BACKGROUND

These spontaneous structures also lack basic amenities, servant spaces (clean water supply, power supply) and their served spaces (bathroom, kitchen with inner sink). According to a study made by the Bureau of National Studies and Development (BNETD) a hierarchy of three main dwellings can be identified; cement wall dwellings, dwelling with corrugated s­ heets, 14 and earth made dwellings . These informal structures create visual chaos in the urban fabric. These areas also do not benefit from the city’s trash disposal system, and its inhabitants do not always have the ability properly of their garbage. Some of these spontaneous communities are located next to highways and near public transportation. The streets and circulation spaces started to become cluttered with garbage and the different materials used, or misused – such as plastic bags. These areas are also located on plateaus, or flood zones. This leads to accruing inundation due to the trash and plastic cluttering the drainage systems of the city.

Beyond the difficulty of their living conditions there is also a non-negligible sociological aspect. By being forced to live in the slums, or in the streets this population losses their privacy, are exposed to insecurity, and deprived of their basic human rights and opportunity to be active member of society.


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Figure 1. Abidjan before 1945. based on drawing from Urbanisme 111-112 (1969): 22 (top left) Figure 2. Badani Plan, 1952. Based on drawing from Urbanisme 111-112 (1969): 23(top right). Figure 3. SETAP pla, 1959 Based on drawing from Urbanisme 111-112 (1969): 23(left). Source Systematic Shift by Yetunde Olaiya


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BACKGROUND

Moreover, an important part of the population living in the slums are immigrants from neighboring countries (Togo, Guinee, Benin, Burkina Faso). According to Atelier d’urbanisme in 1994 for every ten inhabitants of the slums only 4 were Ivorian while the rest are from Burkina Faso (20 per cent) Mali (9 per cent), Ghana (9 per cent) with Togo and Benin (12 percent )1. Alongside these issues there is also squatting or illegal occupation of private abandoned and public buildings also join this issue. These types of illegal residential buildings are mostly located in the Plateaux. A good example of this situation is the pyramid tower built in 1968 and terminated in 1973 by the Italian architect Richard Olivieri to represent the exciting future days of the country. This brutalist architectural treasure was designed as a versatile building, with markets and offices. Due to the lack of maintenance the building has been abandoned since the 1990s before it became the home of squatters. In 2015, the building was accidently set on fire by the squatters living in there and tapping the electricity. This unsafe building continues to host citizens of Abidjan unable to afford appropriate housing.15

Despite the poor living conditions of the urban homeless population of Abidjan an important part of them also seems to be attached to their neighborhood, as it is close to public transportation and their jobs. The housing deficit is estimated at 40,000 units per year, and urbanization keeps worsening the problem. In this district of Abidjan there are 75 precarious neighborhoods of about 3 million people15. In 2013 the government attempted to relocate the dwellers on multiple occasions and gave them a compensation, but they ended moving back into these areas.16 Part of it can be attributed to the poor planning of the city and the lack of functional infrastructures, but the problem of this informal population remains the same. Why pay more to live in an area further from the city-center, jobs, or school, knowing that they have no means of transportation when they can simply avoid costly commute. They were closer and better connected to the center of the city, for jobs and educational purposes.


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Photo 1. Dwelling Constructed of Wood, Blingué - Boni Michel (2000) Photo 2. Dwelling with Cement Walls- Boni Michel (2000) Photo 3 - Dwelling with Earth Walls – Boni Michel (2000) Photo 4 - Dwelling built of corrugated sheets – Boni Michel (2000)


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BACKGROUND

+ Policies and Role of the Ivorian government in this crisis Implementations of new policies and their application To deal with the housing crisis and, the increase of illegal settlements the government had taken various measures before the nineties, and over the years. The most common and repeated measure is the forced/state sponsored eviction of the dwellers.17 In 1989 the political power of the dwellers reaches a considerable importance. As a result, the government stopped the eviction process and gave the inhabitants of the “bidonvilles” the possibility to be heard and more integrated these neighborhoods as “regular” communities and members of the society. Unfortunately, the truce only lasted a few years. In 1997, the government decided to take on another attempt of eviction on the dwellers of the neighborhood of Gobelet,19 and a few others. All these actions were characterized by the divergent interest of the government and the local collectivities. To limit the internal rural-urban migration in the city a decentralization process was initiated in 1980, enabling municipalities to take over direct government interventions a law was also voted in 2001. This law state that “–476 of August 9, 2001, established five levels of decentralized entities: municipalities, cities, departments, districts, and regions.”18

Unfortunately, the government reverted back to a different system of few communes(municipalities). In 2006, the government, also adopted a development policy framework, which the government adopted in 2006, due to the lack of actions of government the problem is still present. To this day many projects regarding the city master are still present but one major project was finished in 2014. Henri Konan Bedie bridge was constructed last and , joined the Houphouët-Boigny, and Charles de Gaulle bridges constructed between 1950 and 1960s connecting the southern and northern part the city. - Internal obstacles within the authorities in charge Another element that seems to also slow down the process of development, and application of policies in the city is the high and consistent level of corruption. Over the years the normalization of corruption can be seen at every layer of the public system, but also in the Ivorian society itself. According to the Data of Transparency International Cote d’Ivoire is ranked 108 out of the 168 countries for corruption.19


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A direct connection can be established between the promotion to an important post in the government and the abusive access to the country wealth. Even though the government itself has launched various campaign against corruption in the country effective results are yet to be seen. However, the government has tried policy to deal with the congestion of the city. However, all these measures and policies haven’t been followed through by both the population, and reinforced by the authorities. Over years the creation of low-cost has also been mentioned few projects were made to fulfill the need of the dwellers. To reduce the number of illegal settlements the government also need to invest more into lower cost and more adapted housing. Although the economic growth of the country has slowed down since the independence in 1960 numbers shows constant growth. Years of corruption of the system has tainted and hinder the growth of the country. Today it is the role of the government to induce that change of mentality into the population, and promote a healthy lifestyle for its population and invest that health into bettering the lifestyle of its population.

The role of architecture in the housing crisis Over the years local architects have noticed the gravity of the issue. The number of homeless’ in the city is tremendously increasing , and so is the proliferation of dangerous housings structures made without architects. Over the years the use of unsafe zones has resulted in various accidents and loss of human lives. The failure to provide these citizens with appropriate shelter shows the necessity of this study and of a new approach to clearly establish understand, and fulfill their needs. It is the role of architects to intervene, and cooperate with officials to provide a new guide for housing the homeless of the city, by creating adaptive and inclusive spaces for all. In this issue, architecture shows its necessity as a regulatory tool of the built environment. As of now it creates both physical and psychological barriers between the members of the society by ignoring the increasing need of their fellow citizens. Architects and their peers can raise awareness and shape the action of its citizens by designing spaces, structures that reinforce the feeling of integration of the homeless and, encourage the reluctant to seek a better lifestyle for themselves.


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02

SUMMARY


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ABIDJAN

LE PLATEAU


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SUMMARY

To deal with this housing challenge, and provide a safe environment for its inhabitants the government has taken minimal efforts.For example, the creation of low cost housing and the expansion of the city into the town of Bingerville. Over the years one thing that seems to be certain is that the government and population themselves because of their preconceive perceptions have their share of responsibility in the development of illegal settlements. In 2013, the government attempted to relocate the dwellers and gave them a compensation, but they ended up moving back into these areas. The reason for the return was the proximity of the dwellings to the city, and public transportation. Many years later even after the construction of a new bridge, the population is still unsatisfied with the public transportation system. The poor urban planning of the city, and the incapacity of the government to provide affordable infrastructures for its citizens contributed to the growth of the problem. Years of negligence from the public authorities have lead these outsiders to wallow in their situation, unable to be heard lacking social capitol.

Indeed, instead of moving away in the peri urbans areas and, pay a significantly higher price for housing and transportation they created a dangerous system that works in their economic favor. From the organized squatting of public and private building, to the creations of low cost housing in dangerous locations closer or less to public transportations and, far from the city center. Those dwellers are now closer and better connected to the center giving them access to jobs and educational therefore a brighter future. Today, out of the 26 million people living in the country 2 out of 10 live in Abidjan, with its population estimated at about 4.6 million of people20. This demographic contrast with the inner cities did not only increase the housing crisis in the city, but also added to the problem of insecurity and insalubrity. Indeed, an important part of the population migrating from rural to urban areas was not educated, but desired to ameliorate their life.


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These migrants, in quest of a better future, education, or simply fleeing the civil wars did not contribute to the industrialization. As a result, Abidjan was unprepared, and became a closed trap for those unable to afford adaquate housing in the city. Unable to find a job and affordable housing they created various type of spontaneous housing all over the city. ‘Surveys also shows that in 2003, most of the inhabitants’ settlements are foreigners; only 38 percent of heads of household were found to be nationals in the survey.21These urban homeless encompasses also children and young adults with no real familial support. Traumatized by the ministerial instability, and the difficulty of their situation turn themselves towards illegal and dangerous activities (robbery, gang, prostitution, or human trafficking) making the life in the city even more dangerous. Between the corruption, outdated perceptions, and the inability of the government to properly follow their own policy the city of Abidjan has a lot to do before being able to fulfill the need of its citizens. According the United nations in 2050 more than 3 million of world population will be leaving in slums or precarious situations.

This research does not pretend to provide a permanent solution to homelessness, but rather to try and find a new approach to this ongoing issue by finding more functional, and innovative solutions to this problem. Homelessness is not so much poor design problem in term of functionality of the architecture of the built environment, but it is more so in terms of the failure to address the impact of the built environment on society. Architectural exclusion can be seen every day nowadays to deal with homeless, this research will reinforce the importance of inclusive design. Architecture is also about social implication, therefore about how to provide shelter and housing to those that are unable to do so.23 The problem of homelessness is somewhat a reflection of how society treats those that are unable to have a home. As owners of cities taking care of the homeless is a much the problem of the city/government and cities official as it is the one of the residents themselves, the citizens.


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03 CASE STUDIES


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+ ABSTRACT The choice of these case studies was determined for many reasons. First, their location on the globe indeed climate, and level of development is a major actor in terms of available resources, policies that influences decision. Secondly for their similarities with Abidjan. A few of these cities have a population estimated between 4 million and 7 million and show significant similarities with the city of Abidjan. These cities although larger in scale have a tremendous impact on the culture and impact on the economy of their country similarly to the city of Abidjan.

Finally, one of the most important element the differences. Each of these cities has a different way of dealing with their homeless population. Five cities were selected in total. Two of them are in East and, South Africa. The city of Nairobi with the biggest African slum located in Kenya, and the city of Maputo in Mozambique. In central America, was selected the city of Jalisco in Mexico which offers a similar environment and different approach, and finally in the western world was selected in Denmark the city of Copenhagen.


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CASE STUDIES

+ THE CASE OF NAIROBI KENYA + BACKGROUND

+ ARCHITECTURE FOR THE HOMELESS

The country of Kenya is located on the Eastern part of Africa near the Indian ocean. The country shares borders with countries with significant war zones making it a hub for immigrants. As a result, many shelters, and camps were created all over the country, leading to an increase of its population especially in big cities such as Nairobi the capital. In terms of economy, and urbanization Nairobi as seen obstacles like the city of Abidjan.

Today the World Bank has recently upgraded Kenya to a “Middle Class Income” status country with a GDP of US$2000 per capita. However, unemployment stands close to 50%, low and very low-income

+ ISSUES AND POLICIES

The city’s urbanization went under many changes. A demolitionist approach was first adopted to deal with the slums upfront. Later on, followed by a more collaborative, and supportive approach in which the government was seeking solutions, as a way to improve the lifestyle of the slum dwellers. By implementing the participation of the dwellers, and encouraging the collaboration between officials, and non-governmental organization to solve the housing crisis. This collaboration focused on the well-being of low-income communities, using housing as a means of social mobility. From there over the years many programs have been created both with the aid of the government, the communities, the World Bank and the UN.

For the past few decades, the country has been dealing with a housing shortage due to the increased population, and rapid urbanization.24 Recently the situation seems to have improved in Nairobi. An an important part of the population still lives in the slums where they depend on vendors for access to water and necessities. The biggest slum of Africa located in the neighborhood of Kibera is a division of Nairobi located only a few kilometers from the city center.

class represents most of the population.25

POLICIES & APPLICATION


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CASE STUDIES

WEAKNESSES & CHALLENGES At first the success of this project seems undeniable but years later the project did not meet the goals intended. Although this approach was designed with the involvement of the community in mind they have been left out of the equation in the process. Important decisions such as the rent were made without their future residents inputs. As the result Nairobi’s middle class in the search of more affordable housing ended moving into these apartments with the informal systems of bribery and corruption while the previous residents moved back in the slums. Another problem was also the lack of communication between the outside the UN, and the KENSUP officials, and the government. Moreover, there are conflicted resolution and transparency issues in the selection of municipalities, bidding and contracting processes, insufficient evaluation and a lack of ownership within the community (Civil Society Forum, January 16, 2013). Finally, the programs’ funding is donor‐sourced with little direct investment by the Kenyan government, resulting in a lack of sustainability (KISIP, Operations Manual, 2011).

Furthermore, after the organizations released the program into the hands of government officials nobody took care of the services previously provided to the residents. Water was not provided for weeks sometimes, pushing the residents back into the slums. Despite lack of access to government services, many residents in Kibera stay because of the strong community and support neighbors. The residents of the slums also often own small restaurants and grocery stores in the slums, and spend most of their time there. The community also developed a form of urban farming to counter the high prices of the city. These previous examples show that the new housing structures lack of inclusivity and a sense of community for its residents.


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+ DESIGN, AND EXAMPLE OF LOW COST AND SAFE HOUSING Most of the programs created were supported by the government and had a promising future. KENSUP was institutionalized through creating a slum development department under the Ministry of Housing. KENSUP has established a slum upgrading fund, the Kenya Slum Upgrading, Low Cost Housing and Infrastructure Fund (KENSUF) which targets about $13 billion for the full implementation of the program.26The goal of this program was to use housing cooperatives as the means to mobilize communities, define ownership and general tenure arrangements. The programming targeted the areas of Mavoko and other locations in Soweto, Kibera. Both programs are built on collaboration: KENSUP UN HABITAT responsible for the distribution of water and sanitation and solid waste management in Kibera.


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CASE STUDIES

As a result, only a few residents decided to stay away from the slums hoping for an improvement of their condition. Recently one project has been praised for its success. The RAP, also known as the Resettlement actions plans, was implanted with the help of the world bank in order to located population living around the slums of the Kibera, in an area needed to expand the rail road. This project faced the same issues that the KENSUP, but relocated people into new housing. This project was implemented in a complex environment characterized by numerous and intertwined conflicts from land issues, to economic and political clashes. Yet, despite those tensions, most beneficiaries had a positive opinion of the project in Soweto East.

The risk of obstruction was partly mitigated by constant campaigns of awareness creation and dialogue within the community and the political stakeholders, by the efficient community structures and the stringent criteria of eligibility. In that sense, the implication of actors that are directly a part of that community helped in the good apprehension of the community and in the neutralization of those conflicts.


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Credits KENSUP


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CASE STUDIES

+ THE CASE OF MAPUTO, MOZAMBIQUE + BACKGROUND

Maputo the capital and largest city of Mozambique is located on the southeastern coast of Africa. Like many big cities in Africa the population of Maputo has seen a major growth of its population due to the rapid urbanization, and industrialization. In addition to that the city also dealt with climate change, pollution, and flooding issues. A civil war has also caused a recurring migration rural-urban. The biggest slum of the country is in Maputo and occupies 35 percent of the city26.

+ ARCHITECTURE FOR THE HOMELESS & POLICIES In the 1980s, the city officials created a program to solve the expansion of illegal settlements. This plan was very effective and consist in the redistribution of thousands of plots of land to citizens for housing. The UN then recognized this plan as a model of planning for poor urban areas. A couple years later the government launched the Mozambique Country Programme is an align urban development efforts at the national government, municipal government and community levels. It aims to include the urban poor in the planning and decisionmaking processes.


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Credits Danish School of Arts


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CASE STUDIES

+ DESIGN, AND EXAMPLE OF LOW COST AND SAFE HOUSING In 2016, a project was organized by architects from Denmark, officials and other associations to develop a new type of housing for the homeless. The Casas Melhoradas is a housing project development created to improve the physical living conditions of low-income groups in Maputo, the capital of Mozambique in southeast Africa. The typologies of these new housing structures were based on a more economical use of the space and, material to provide adequate cost housing and adequate housing. What makes these structures so innovative is the type simplicity of the method of construction, and the use of recycled materials.

This project also seeked to improve mobility, and solve the overcrowding of spaces in the poor areas of the city. By creating diverse houses, multi story and flats based on the local socio-economic and cultural conditions it solves the housing shortage at a low cost. The project also integrates prefabricated elements, produced locally in Maputo’s slums by the locals, based on their capacities. Each of these houses was designed based on the Mozambican traditions and,reinterpreted to fit its resident needs.


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Casas Melhoradas - by Johan Mottelson (2016)


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CASE STUDIES

+ THE CASE OF JALISCO, MEXICO + BACKGROUND The country of Mexico is a great example of the country that learned to deal with slums and the housing shortage in the country. Over the years the government has focused on the creation of low cost and adaptive housing at a large scale for its population, but also minimizing the social negative social ramifications

+ DESIGN, AND EXAMPLE OF LOW COST AND SAFE HOUSING Earlier this year a project was created ,and adapted for the city of Jalisco, located in Guadalajara to provide a solution to its housing crisis. To do so the Centre of Investigation for Sustainable Development (CIDS) of Infonavit tried to respond to the diverse cultural, social, environmental, spatial and functional needs of different localities and bio-climates in finding assisted self-build housing solutions.

It is in this logic that the Mexican studio ZD+A was invited to collaborate with IĂąaki EcheverrĂ­a to propose an innovative model of self-built house, that will favor the development of more inclusive environment, and social refuge. These new spaces were designed to be implemented in the heart of cities, rather than in their peripheries far from urban epicenters in the city. This proposal takes in consideration the poor, and the homeless as actor of the city, and understand that in order for these structures to be efficient they to fully consider their needs such as transportation jobs to minimize their everyday costs. It implements an important social life, includes green spaces, access to public transportation, and communal spaces. Social housing needs to prioritize economic, social and cultural mobility that exists in cities, of which housing is a fundamental element.


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Credits ZD+A


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CASE STUDIES +THE CASE OF COPENHAGEN, DENMARK Like many other European countries Denmark also had to deal with the issue of homelessness. Following the example of Finland, the country has adopted the housing first policy. This program combines various methods to solve the issue of homeless. To do so specific housing support interventions are tested in the Homelessness Strategy, and each of these interventions is continuously monitored at an individual, municipal and national level to check the effectiveness of the methodologies.27Although this method might seem unusual an evaluation completed in 2013 shows the success of the Housing First services.

+ DESIGN, AND EXAMPLE OF LOW COST AND SAFE HOUSING Earlier this year a project made by E Architecture + Erik Juul was commissioned to change an empty lot at Jagtvej 69 in Copenhagen into a structure for the homeless. This project shines by its simplicity and, the repurpose of underused spaces into social spaces, and temporary housing structures.

This project combines gardens and public spaces in the center of the city to reintegrate the homeless. The design also focuses on communication between the homeless and their surroundings. To do so a series of modular containers were designed to accommodate different types of activities through the structure.The housing containers will provide the same amenities as a typical apartment, a bedroom, a kitchen and dining space but also an office, a living room, as well as a yoga studio.What makes this project innovative is its flexibility, each of these containers has the possibility to be rearranged by adding new features according to the needs of its user. Hereafter, the project can be disassembled, and moved to a new site to accommodate new people. In opposite to other shelters that tend to repel visitors, and interactions this project shows a better understand of the needs of the urban citizen.


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Credits : E Architecture + Erik Juul


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04

LESSON LEARNED


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The case studies selected provided an opportunity to look at homelessness from a different perspective. In Kenya, Nairobi had many opportunities to provide and developed affordable and appropriate housing for its residents but unfortunately the project wasn’t properly handled. Poor design decisions and failures of the government in meeting their promises lead to the failure of promising projects. In Mozambique city, officials have created programs, that aimed to reinforce the inclusivity between its citizens, and provide an answer to the housing shortage. In addition to that, Danish and Mozambique designers also came together in the construction of functional and adaptable structures.

These residences are modern enough to fit the needs of the citizens but also preserve the heritage of the country and residents. In Mexico housing solutions were also developed to solve their issues, without neglecting the social needs of the homeless. In Denmark, a similar effort was made with the endorsement of the housing first policy, and has shown positive results. The architects involved focused on the stigmatization of the homeless and ways to solve it, by creating structures located in unused spaces. These case studies show the complexity of the issue, and the importance and the role of architects’, city officials, and community into solving this issue.


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04 CONCLUSION


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POLICIES

Through this entire research important elements can be identified as tools to solve the housing crisis in urban environments, and more so specifically in the city of Abidjan. Starting with policies a few ones can be established and, reinforced by the city’s officials. It is important to define a clear method to solve homelessness that includes diverse strategies to solve the problem such as different housing solutions that are monitored frequently in order to evaluate their efficiency. It is also the role of city officials to encourage, promote and invest into longterm affordable housing. Based on the model of housing first policy permanent housing could be offered to homeless as a part of the program for their integration. The goals of these policies will be to reduce the number of people sleeping in streets by offering them between options than hostels, and secluded and stigmatizing shelters. These options should be different or adaptative based on age ( teen, young adults, adults and elderly people).

A relation between social support and housing need to be established- can be seen in Denmark. The use of abandoned or unused site to create appropriate housing not necessarily located in the city center but close enough to public transportation. The involvement of the community, and communication at all level will also be an imperative.

PLANNING STRATEGIES

Overall the planning strategy revolves around a careful monitoring and tracking of all various projects. Constantly try to find and improve the found solution to provide a home to those who needs one. The program should be updated every few years to insure its efficiency, improvement and adaptability to the need to their users.. It will also be necessary to identify around the city areas that can be used to fulfill this project. Identify areas where there is potential for development of affordable housing. Encourage development of multifamily housing. Increase housing opportunities for seniors and the elderly .


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DESIGN SOLUTIONS For these projects to be successfully done, they must include sustainable alternative in the construction process and materials used without neglecting the distribution of water and electricity, and the mobility of its residents. A sustainable project that will also implement clean energies, and water treatment, and also recycling systems has more chances to be successful. The longevity of the project will also be higher if the government can makes substantial initial investment to fund the structures, and maintain them. Locations for the structures would include restorated, and abandoned public building as well as current dwellings. The implementation of large relocation projects in informal settlements is a tedious problem to solve but taking in consideration these different aspects will make the solutions more viable. This project must include hierarchical housing structures located around the cities, but also the creation of an inclusive community where homeless people, and homeowners can get along. The complex should include spaces for teaching and learning about independence, job training and the importance of ownership, public spaces.


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06

PROPOSAL


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PROPOSAL PROJECT FRAMEWORK + Project site: specific locations in the city and selection criteria This project should be flexible, and does not need to be tied to one precise site since he revolves around the community, and the reintegration of abandoned and deteriorated structures. Currently three locations were picked to host this three steps housing project. For the step 1 : La pyramide d’Abidjan is a high-rise building located in the Plateaux, the business area of Abidjan. This structure could be restored in order to fit its new program and objective. Considering the diversity of the program, various other sites can also be considered.

For the step 2: The dwelling of gobelet is one of the public lot that have been rearrange by their past residents. This space is located on a flooding zone, and should be reimagined and, redesigned to be more resilient, and accommodate appropriate housing. Step 3: The step revolves around the creation of affordable housing around the city that can then be assigned to those who needs a home. These housings could be assigned by the government, and also financed by them. It is also expected that the city officials will be encouraging these type of projects, as well as mixed-used building rather than developments that only focus on commercial buildings


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+ Project rationale:

+ Project Short/Long Term

The Needs of the population

Objectives

As it was previously stated the rationale of this project revolves around fulfilling the needs of society today’s citizens. Looking at affordable housing, home owning, and social reintegration. The project seeks to provide a model, and a beginning of an answer if not a solution to the issue of homeless in megacities around world, specifically in developing countries were the issues runs deeper, and is getting out of control. It explore every layers of the problems from the actors to society itself in order to prevent the expansion of this issue.

This project should be solved in various steps but for its success to be accomplished a list of goals and objectives needs to be defined. Strategic Goal 1: Provide a model for affordable and sustainable housing Objective 1A: Improve the housing market, by encouraging the development of affordable housing, and mixed used spaces. Objective 1B: Facilitate the access to financial resources, and investment for the homeless Strategic Goal 2: Meet the Need for Quality, Affordable Rental Homes Objective 2A: Architect and officials coming together to provide Rental Investment Objective 2B: Rental Alignment Strategic Goal 3: Use Housing to improve quality life Objective 3A: Subsequently decrease the number of homeless Objective 3B: Improve the overall economy Objective 3C: Health and Housing Stability Strategic Goal 4: Build Strong, Resilient, and Inclusive Communities Objective 4A: Provide fair Housing Objective 4B: Green and Healthy Homes. Objective 4C: Address natural disasters or deal with them


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PROPOSAL

LE PLATEAU LA PYRAMIDE

SITE OPTION 1 La pyramide du Plateau


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SITE OPTION 2 Neighborhood of Gobelet Credit : Serges T, abidjan.net


LESSONS LEARNED The project focuses on community, and the reintegration of all the members the society through housing. The challenge of the project was to analyze this issue as a whole, consider all the different layers of the issue as well as the different actors. The housing crisis is an important social problem, and involves so many parties that it will be very inefficient to leave out omit all the actors involved.The main goal of this project was to provide a beginning of a reflexion for a new understanding and approach to the problem of homelessness in the city.

+ Design Program DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS : Three steps Housing Step 1 : The temporary structure will be bigger in size, and the most important step of the housing strategy. It will include many programmatic elements that will seek to improve and redevelop the social skill of its residents. Step 2 : Permanent affordable housing - small houses, appartments Step 3 : Full independency Each of these structures will be build as simply as possible in order to facilitate their mobility if necessary. My proposal will focused on designing spaces that utilize space in the way that respond to the lack of space in the city. Residential Public Spaces Activities Yoga Studio Athletic studios Playground Green spaces garden (crops) Educational Indoor/ Outdoor classrooms

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EDUCATION RESIDENTIAL STUDIO LOFTS FAMILY HOUSING

RECREATIONAL

GARDENS EDUCATION

EDUCATION LOBBY OR PUBLIC SPACE

GARDENS

EDUCATION

ENCOURAGE DEVELOPMENT OF AFFORDABLE HOUSING, AND MIXED USED SPACE

IMPROVE THE USE OF SPACE

MODEL AFFORDABLE + SUSTAINABLE HOUSING

FACILTATE ACCESS TO INVESTMENT IN THESE TYPES OF PROJECT

COMMUNITY MEMBERS AND CITY OFFICIALS COMING TOGETHER TO INVEST IN THE PROJECT

DECREASE NUMBER OF HOMELESS IN THE CITY

MEET THE NEEDS OF THE POPULATION

LOWER HEALTH ISSUES AND INCREASE STABILITY

BUILD GREEN AND RESILIENT AND AFFORDABLE HOMES

STRONGER AND MORE SUCCESSFUL COMMUNITY AND ECONOMY

IMPROVE LIFESTYLE

ADDRESS NATURAL DISASTERS


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URBAN CONTEXT (in developpement)

RESTAURANTS

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION GROCERY STORES BANKS

THE PYRAMID SURROUNDINGS

PUBLIC WORKERS PUBLIC WORKERS OFFICE WORKERS OFFICE WORKERS FOREIGN GOVERNMENT FOREIGN GOVERNMENT WORKERS WORKERS RESTAURATION WORKERS RESTAURATION WORKERS

STUDENTS STUDENTS

PUBLIC WORKERS

PUBLIC WORKERS

OFFICE WORKERS

OFFICE WORKERS

FOREIGN GOVERNMENT WORKERS

FOREIGN GOVERNMEN WORKERS

RESTAURATION WORKERS

RESTAURATION WORK

STUDENTS

STUDENTS

OTHERS

OTHERS

RESIDENTS RESIDENTS NIGHTNIGHT OWLSOWLS

DAY

TARGET GROUPS TARGET GROUPS TARGET GROUPS

USERS ACTIVITIES USERS ACTIVITIES

EDUCATION EDUCATION RECREATIONAL RECREATIONAL

RESIDENTIALRESIDENTIAL STUDIO LOFTS FAMILY HOUSING

STUDIO LOFTS FAMILY HOUSING

NIGHT WORKERS GARDENS GARDENS EDUCATION

EDUCATION EDUCATION

EDUCATION

LOBBYLOBBY OR OR PUBLIC PUBLIC GARDENS GARDENS

50 % RESIDENTIAL 50 % RESIDENTIAL

ENTERTAINMENT (BARS, RESTAURANT CLUBS) EDUCATION

EDUCATION

RECREATIONAL

RECREATIONAL

RESIDENTIAL

RESIDENTIAL

STUDIO LOFTS FAMILY HOUSING

STUDIO LOFTS FAMILY HOUSING

10 % GARDENS 10 % GARDENS RECREATIONAL RECREATIONAL

EDUCATION EDUCATION

RESTAURATION20WORKERS % EDUCATION 20 % EDUCATION 10 % RETAIL 10 % RETAIL

10 % RECREATIONAL 10 % RECREATIONAL

NIGHT

USERS ACTIVITIES

DAY

GARDENS EDUCATION

GARDENS EDUCATION

EDUCATION

LOBBY OR PUBLIC GARDENS

EDUCATION

LOBBY OR PUBLIC GARDENS


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PROVIDE THE HOMELESS WITH AN OPPORTUNITY TO REINTEGRATE SOCIETY

CREATE A SENSE COMMUNITY DEAL WITH THE HOUSING CRISIS

BALANCED SYSTEM

SQUATTERS

NIGHT WORKERS

UNADEQUATE / DYSFUNCTIONAL HOUSING ENTERTAINMENT (BARS, RESTAURANT CLUBS)

RESTAURATION WORKERS

URBAN FABRIC

NIGHT

USERS ACTIVITIES

ADAPTED HOUSING

ADAPTED HOUSING

SUSTAINABLE MODEL

PUBLIC WORKERS OFFICE WORKERS

PUBLIC WORKERS OFFICE WORKERS

FOREIGN GOVERNMENT WORKERS RESTAURATION WORKERS

FOREIGN GOVERNMENT WORKERS RESTAURATION WORKERS

STUDENTS

STUDENTS

NIGHT WORKERS

ENTERTAINMENT (BARS, R

RESTAURATION WORKERS


SCHEMATIC DESIGN

(in developpement)

+ La course commune urbaine is a inner courtyard located in the center of middle classes residences. Their design is directly inspired from traditional houses looked in rural areas. In these type of residences, the servant spaces are sometimes shared, and located in the courtyard where they are accessible to all. This type of organization is the result of the adaption of rural migrants in the city. Although extremely practical these types of model don’t integrate/promote a safe and clean environment for all. This type of habitation was using to save the issue of migration and the housing crisis in the city.

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= Les cours communes provide many advantages. As the urban population is constantly increasing these types of housing a more cost-efficient use of the space. The use of water, and electricity is often shared, as the servant spaces are sometimes located in the center of the residence. The courtyard located also helps to provide a sense of community, and encourage communication between neighbors. L’arbre a palabre is a gathering space located in the center of a residential area, or in the city. This type of community spaces originated from villages, and were later imported from the villages into urban areas. Nowadays, L’arbre a palabre is still gathering space were citizen meet each other to discuss issues regarding, society, class and politics


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06 BIBLIOGRAPHY


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ANNOTATED BIBLIOGRAPHY 1- United Nations, “World Urbanization Trends 2014: Key Facts.” World Urbanization Prospects: the 2014 Revision, United Nations, 2015, p.1 Accessed 10/13/17 Available online also at: https://esa.un.org/unpd/wup/ publications/files/wup2014-highlights.Pdf This data was taken from a study from the United nations on World Urbanization Prospects in the 2014 Revision. The OECD or the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development is in charge of promoting policies to improve the socio-economic wellbeing of populations around the world. 2- OHCHR, “Annual Reports” , 2005 http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Housing/Pages/AnnualReports.aspx This data was provided by the reports the principal United Nations office in charge of promoting and protect human rights for all, OHCHR “leads global human rights efforts speaks out objectively in the face of human rights violations worldwide”. These number were also simplified to amplify their importance, and understanding. 3- http://www.ins.ci/n/documents/RGPH2014_expo_dg.pdf “Recensement Général de la Population et de l’Habitat 2014 ” This data translates as General Census of Population and Housing 2014 comes from a report of made of the National Institute of Statistics in Cote d’Ivoire. 4- Nations

Urban Slums Reports: The case of Abidjan, Ivory Coast – Kouame Apessika sponsored by United

This article was written by an urbanist working for the United. It is full report accessing the evolution of the country and its urban planning as well as its history, and also giving information about poverty and the housing crisis. 5- OHCHR, and UN “Number of homeless persons per 100,000 population” Accessed 10/13/17 Available online also at: http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Housing/homelessness.pdf This issue provided by United nations give insight and numbers about what homelessness, its complexity and a broad and detailed definition of it. 6- Republic Cote d’Ivoire urbanization review January 2015; World bank This document is a report on urbanization provide by the world bank. It is done each year. 7- Urban Slums Reports: The case of Abidjan, Ivory Coast – Kouame Apessika sponsored by United Nations – previously cited


BIBLIOGRAPHY

8- Urban Slums Reports: The case of Abidjan, Ivory Coast – Kouame Apessika sponsored by United Nations - previously cited 9- World bank, “ Poverty, Equity Data Report : Cote d’Ivoire” http://povertydata.worldbank.org/poverty/ country/CIV) Accessed 10/14/17 The World Bank is an important source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. They lead many studies around the World, and provide low interests loan to country in needs. 10- Urban Slums Reports: The case of Abidjan, Ivory Coast – Kouame Apessika sponsored by United Nations – previously cited 11- Systemic Shifts: The Case of Abidjan’s Urban Planning, 1945–60 Yetunde Olaiya is a PhD candidate at the Princeton University School of Architecture, specializing in the history of modern architecture and urban design in sub-Saharan Africa. She was the recipient of the 2012 Carter Manny Award for dissertation research and is currently a fellow at the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies. 12- “Systemic Shifts: The Case of Abidjan’s Urban Planning, 1945–60 “ Yetunde Olaiya - cited previously 13- In 1995 of the two and a half million people currently living in the metropolis of Abidjan, various studies indicate that 400,000-500,000 live in 72 precarious settlements.13(The informal housing sector in the metropolis of Abidjan Alphonse Yapu DiadouK). 14- BNETD: Bureau National d’Etudes Techniques et de Développement / National Office of Technical Studies and Development 15- Due to the lack of maintenance the building was abandoned since the 1990s before it became the home of squatters. In 2015, the building was set fired by the squatters live in there and abusing of the electricity. This unsafe building continues to host citizens of Abidjan unable to afford appropriate housing. (imfodrome.ci) 17- 18 Christian Bouquet and Irène Kassi-Djodjo , “Déguerpir pour reconquérir l’espace public à Abidjan.”, 2014

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This article translated as “Cleaning off” to Reconquer the Public Space in Abidjan” http://espacepolitique.revues.org/2963 , Accessed 10/14/17. It was written by Christian Bouquet sociology doctor in African studies in france and Irène Kassi-Djodjo journalist. 18- World Bank, “Côte d’Ivoire Urbanization Review -Diversified Urbanization” June , 2015 Accessed 10/13/17 Available online also at: http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/403571468027247309/Cote-d-Ivoire-Urbanization-reviewdiversified-urbanization 19- Data of transparency international, Corruption Perception Index 2016 https://www.transparency.org/ news/feature/corruption_perceptions_index_2016 20- Contamin Bernard (ed.), Memel-Fotê H. (ed.) , “Le modèle ivoirien en questions : crises, ajustements, recompositions” 1997 22- United Nations, “World Urbanization Trends 2014: Key Facts.” World Urbanization Prospects: the 2014 Revision, United Nations, 2015, p.1 Accessed 10/13/17 Available online also at: https://esa.un.org/unpd/wup/publications/files/wup2014highlights.Pdf 23 -James P. Cramer, ‎Jennifer Evans Yankopolus , “Almanac of Architecture & Design, 2005. p 7 chap At home in the city Case studies 24- The World Bank, Kenya | Data, Apr. 2014 25/26 – United Nation habitat Briefing Note on GOK/UN-HABITAT Kenya Slum Upgrading Programme (KENSUP) | Nairobi 30-31 January, 2007 27- Strategy Lars Benjamins, en SFI – The Danish National Centre for Social Research, Copenhagen, Denmark | Policy Review Up-date: Results from the Housing First based Danish Homelessness European Journal of Homelessness _ Volume 7, No. 2, | December 2013

Tackling Homelessness in Urban Environments - MARCH Thesis  

Architectural Thesis March 2018 Preliminary work

Tackling Homelessness in Urban Environments - MARCH Thesis  

Architectural Thesis March 2018 Preliminary work

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