Projective Cities, Projects Review 2018.

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FACULTY Dr Sam Jacoby Dr Platon Issaias Dr Mark Campbell Spyros Efthymiou STUDENTS Lucía Alonso Aranda Raül P. Avilla Royo Ricardo Palma Prieto Susana Rojas Saviñón Vasav Hemant Vakilna Gianna Bottema Huajing Wen GUEST LECTURERS David Madden Jingru Cyan Cheng Josep Bohigas


The MPhil in Architecture and Urban Design: Projective Cities supports original enquiries into the city within diverse political, economic, social, historical and cultural contexts. The programme offers students a rigorous framework to develop a substantial and independent piece of interdisciplinary research across the boundaries of architecture, urban design and planning. The research in Projective Cities is motivated by two fundamental research enquiries. First, to develop the methods, objectives and means of design research. This is both understood as an intellectual problem (exploring the relationships between theory and practice to disciplinary knowledge production) and a practical problem (how design research can affect practice). And, second, to develop architectural urbanism as a multi-scalar approach to design crossing conventional disciplinary separations. Enquiries are further framed by several core propositions: that architectural and urban plans are formal and theoretical products of disciplinary action and shaped by social, political and economic forces; that design and

research are inseparable; that knowledge production and formal production are methodologically connected; and that architecture and urbanism are symbiotic modes of enquiry driven by relevance to and agency within spatial design practices. This field of enquiry is defined by distinct diagrams that are always social and spatial. This year, research projects have examined the issues of public services and education in migration cities such as Tijuana, the provision and procurement of public housing in Barcelona, the need for community-led housing in London, the Church of England as a new urban institution and the agenda of English Garden Towns.

FROM ARRIVAL CITY TO PERMANENCE: SERVICES AND EDUCATION IN TIJUANA LUCIA ALONSO ARANDA Migration is re-shaping the social, cultural, urban and economic landscapes of cities worldwide. Especially Tijuana embodies several dimensions of the migration phenomenon: it is an arrival city, a passer-by city, and a city where people return to – some by choice and others by force. However, migrants face many challenges when settling in Tijuana, such as informality, complex land ownership, housing abandonment, shortage of public services and facilities, and a rugged topography. This dissertation studies how public services, education, and different housing typologies can empower an incoming migrant population and respond to the transition of becoming inhabitants of a city. Using Tijuana as a case study, the dissertation proposes a network of centrally located mixed-used centres with different housing typologies, services, leisure, and education. The purpose of this project is to question how architects can engage with different users and household configurations and their necessities during different phases of settlement, in order to allow a more effective transition into becoming residents in the city. In an attempt to respond to Tijuana’s increasing incoming population, this project focuses on the rise of alternative providers of public services and education. It proposes an Urban Integration Network, a third party provider of basic services, housing, and education funded through a public-private partnership.

Axonometric of housing, services, and educational facilities in East Tijuana

Views of housing (top) and educational facilities (bottom)

Ground floor

Upper floor

Ground floor Progressive housing unit

Progressive housing axonometric


In every major city, housing is being disputed as a right and as a commodity within a process of transformation that affects its urban fabric as much as its social structure. Architecture and urban design are major drivers in these transformations, as both public authorities and developers instrumentalise them. Barcelona is chosen as a case study due to the critical role that design and architecture have historically had in the transformation of the city, both morphologically and symbolically. In addition, with the recent socio-political and economic crisis, the discipline of architecture has changed its approach to professional practice, administration and academia. For these reasons, Barcelona offers a rich context to study alternative procurement models that challenge the roles of city administration, dwellers and architects. Consequently, a new procurement process with a different tenureship and management model that prevents the commodification of housing while permitting the inclusion of more stakeholders in the design process is proposed. This study especially analyses the impact of local associations and dwellers during the design process but also post occupancy. It hereby reconsiders the notion of housing standards and associated housing design and procurement processes by rethinking the scale of the domestic space.

Common areas (top) and domestic space (bottom)

Section through different housing models

Public housing plan

Activity as room standard


Community-led housing projects across the UK are seen as important solutions to the housing crisis. As many of these types of projects are new in London, conflicts with conventional approaches and institutions have arisen, requiring a fundamental rethink in how we develop affordable housing. While social cohesion for sustainable neighbourhoods and ‘communities of care’ are what these projects aim to create, issues of funding and land acquisition remain the often unresolved main problem to building affordable housing. Public expenditure cuts and an increasingly diversified household structure – due to an ageing society – demand new housing models that can provide intergenerational support and mutual care to help ease pressure on public services and enhance the wellbeing of residents. This project studies community-led housing, using the active community group of the St Ann’s Redevelopment Trust (StART) in Haringey, London, as a case study. StART is planning to redevelop the St Ann’s Hospital site through the framework of a Community Land Trust (CLT) into a development of 100% genuinely affordable housing of up to 800 units. The project examines what ‘community-led’ means, the role of CLT’s within the context of the Localism Act (2011), and how StART can be seen as a foundational project to develop a housing model in which people can age in place.

Site axonometric and site plan area 1 level 2 (left)

Cluster apartment axonometric

Typology D cluster apartments


This project questions the role of the English religious institution in the twenty-first century. It examines how the Church of England, as the state church, has gained a remarkable architectural heritage, an incomparable sociopolitical and economic power, and, more importantly, a social and moral responsibility. Given this context, one can argue that the Anglican Church ought to ameliorate public services and social conditions, and return to an innovation of architectural typologies and urban interventions. The institution’s territorial prominence through historical land division and emblematic church buildings has been essential to the successful management of the Church’s continuous charitable work. Taking advantage of an existing, multiscalar approach, this dissertation proposes a new collective infrastructure consisting of housing, education, and healthcare facilities. Developed from the Church’s original purpose of ‘housing’ social needs, the proposed network of Parish Centres creates a new public service and housing infrastructure. The design proposal is based on historical precedents of English religious institutions and their translation into the present socio-political context. The main aim is to envision how the Church can provide adequate services and infrastructures for the necessities of the present-day society.

design proposal

Kitchen passage (top) and integration pavilion

St. Luke’s Parish Centre


Design Plan 50m.

St. Luke’s masterplan design proposal

Upper Floors

Accommodation for families & contributing adults

Laundry Integration Workshops Guest Accommodation Infirmary


Multi-purpose Hall

Kindergarten & Nursery

Kitchen Clergy Accommodation

design proposal


Lower Floors


Second Floor Upper floor 10m.


Market Hall

Cloister Walk

Vegetable Garden



Main Entrance

Kitchen Passage


Ground Floor Ground floor 10m. design proposal


This research examines the sustained English tradition of the Garden City and the housing of a populace in suburbs and satellite towns. As part of this, the evolution of the English Garden City as a typological entity and its elements is studied. The Garden City is a prominent historical model that proposed both a radical economic and realty model and a design-based solution to the socio-economic problems of the late nineteenth century. Its model was reconceptualised several times – from the initial ‘Garden City’ idea by the sociologist Ebenezer Howard to the ‘New Towns Movement’ post World War II to the suburban sprawl after 1965 – and is still considered a viable solution to contemporary housing and infrastructural problems in the UK. This research studies how the Garden City has inspired new community models and their relevance to today’s territorial and neighbourhood planning in the form of a Garden Town.

Urban garden enclave at Whitchurch, Buckinghamshire

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