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Randa El-Hallak Architecture Portfolio


Randa El Hallak +32472762852 Gent, Belgium EDUCATION Bachelor of Science in Architectural Studies (2011-2015) Academie Libanaise des Beaux Arts (ALBA) Balamand, Lebanon Master of Science in Architecture: Resilient and Sustainable Strategies (2016- 2018) Ku Leuven, Campus St Lucas, Gent, Belgium Erasmus Master in Architecture: Semester Abroad (September ‘17-January’18) École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture Montpellier EXPERIENCE Internship at BESIX Abu Dhabi, December 2015 - June 2016 Internship at Architecture office Bonaco Tripoli, June-July 2016 MAARCH: Nolli mapping in Sint Niklaas Antwerp, Belgium, July 2017 RELEVANT VOLUNTEER WORK With YES program, Lebanon Restoration of Lebanese University, Tripoli (2010) Art Classes for Underprivileged Youth, Tripoli (2011) English Classes for Underprivileged Youth, LAU, Beirut (2012) City Cleanup after attacks, Tripoli (2013) ALBA school library (2012 - 2014)

REFERENCES Mohamed Al Mufti - ALBA Lillet Breddels - KULeuven

Studio 1: The Unlikely Neighbor Semester 1: Steven Geeraert peri Urban Park Factories and social sustainability in Hemiksem

Section showing topography 1:1000

The aim was to discover the town of Hemiksem and intervene where we find necessary. In my exploration of Hemiksem I noticed a lot of existing interventions that work very well; minimal interventions that reconnect inhabitants to nature. Hemiksem is an industrial town historically. They did a great job making nature more accessible to inhabitants, but the industry was very much off limits. Factory does not always equal evil. My proposal was to open the industry, which is mostly along the waterfront, to the public, continuing the spirit of existing small interventions to create one big ‘park’ that celebrates Hemiksem’s industrial heritage instead of shying away from it. The project blurs the boundaries between industry and nature, private and public, by familiarizing the people with the industry,and the industry with the people. It creates an accessible maze of nature, industry, and society.

Nature is very important for a city to breathe. However a lot of people, especially teenagers, are also attracted to industrial landscapes. This project was inspired by a site visit where a group of teenagers was ‘hanging out’ just outside the factories, at the closest point before access was restricted. This project acknowledges the importance of factories but also their time-dependent nature where they are only used 40 hours a week.

Inspiration: Spanish dreams Photo Š Cadelas verdes, Ana Amado, Marta Marcos, Luz Paz

Familiarizing people with the industry and the industry with people.

Claiming back the waterfront as public space, maintaining the industrial aesthetic.

existing plan scale 1:100

Prototype: Example of Industry accessibility: mass plan

5m 5m

5m 5m

plan 1:100 plan 1:100 Bethlehem SteelStacks Arts + Cultural Campus WRT

5m 5m

Proposed Tourism Bridge

Existing Industrial Bridge

Bridge: Plan and Section

section 1:100 section 1:100

GKD Metal Fabrics’ Illumesh at the Indemann Project by Maurer United Architects

Studio 2: BANANA Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Antwerp semester 2: Bruno Peeters

A group project proposing an alternative to the proposed Ringland project in Antwerp. We chose a fiber going from city center of Antwerp to suburbs. The site I chose to work on was the bridge. The bridge, the connector of inner city and suburbs is approached as an inclusive system for all types of slower or shared mobility. Smooth flows of bike lanes, pedestrian lanes, and tram tracks go through the bridge, uninterrupted, coming together with a public function to embrace transport as part of a healthy public life, as opposed to the pollution nuisance it is now.


juice bar



coffee bar

sandwich bar










The public space program is a covered, but always open public market. It serves people living in suburbs returning from their inner city jobs and users of the station. However it also serves as its own landmark where it is intentionally visited as a hub for sharing meals, or shopping for food. A tram stop in the middle of the bridge is the mobility exchange point. Sidewalks wide enough to have benches with openings overlooking the on coming traffic from R1.



Elective 2: Oikonet Semester 2: Tomas Ooms A Moment of Architecture becoming Exploration of MA

For this elective course the project was to read about the Japanese ‘Ma’ and interpret its personal meaning to us. The objective of this exercise was to train our presentation skills, of how to translate an idea into physical objects or drawings, to help in our architectural representation. My perception of MA, as an interval was inspired by Beirut and its hyper development. We had to produce a 4 page booklet with text describing the project, a 4 page booklet for section, and a model. The model shown is a study model, where I was trying to test the fakeness of a material, where it leaves the viewer with a sense of mistrust. Is it light or is it heavy? The heavy concrete balloon represents the urban burden left on the citizens of Beirut.

A Moment of Nothingness 1. marker: the comma, interrupted 2. section: the loop 3. model: Urban Burden

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ZIB Zero Impact Building Theme: mobility semester 2: Caroline Sohie

A group project exploring Dampoort, Gent in the present and designing for 2030. Under the theme mobility, the main concept was to have a completely car free city center. Green and blue fingers will be integrated in the city with a fast bike lane connecting the them. As the gate to the city, the new station will be the main switching point for modes of transport, the kiss and ride. The building will also generate its own power with pv panels, collect rainwater, and provide the area with 150 new jobs. Another main theme was permeability and flexibilityconnecting the two sides of Dampoort, architecturally and socially with socially inclusive programs like workshops, classes and employment offices. As group councilor I represented our project in a village made up of 5 themes: mobility, nature, water, material, energy,and space.

KULeuven . 2017

Climate Design

Proposed ‘fast bike lane’ in Gent




bicycle parking S L E E Pplaces BOX HOTEL 2,500 AT E L I E R


FA S T L I N Estorage B I K E PA R K I N G buffer tanks & B I K E PA R K I N G


server and systems SLEEPBOX HOTEL AT E L I E R


& B I K E PA R K I N G


mobility offices 110S m2 LEEPBOX HOTEL

AT E L I E R minimarket FA S T L I N E B I K E PA R K I N G 50 m2 & COMMERCE

bicycle parkingrestaurant 2,500 places 90 m2



waiting area 108 m2

restaurant 90 m2 hemp shop 30 m2 cafeteria 90 m2

Sleepbox hotel 1,050 m2 (80 places)

train platforms

cafeteria 90 m2

mobility offices lockers 110 m2 minimarket 50 m2

Atelier 1,090 m2

delivering storage 90 m2 bicycle parking 1,500 places

buffer storage hemp shop tanks 30 m2 server and systems

bicycle repair 90 m2

36 m2


classrooms 172 m2 employment office 78 m2

bicycle repair 90 m2

Atelier 1,090 m2

delivering storage 90 m2

Sleepbox hotel 1,050 m2 (80 places)

bicycle parking 1,500 places train platforms

waiting area 108 m2 lockers room 36 m2

practice lessons

classrooms 172 m2 employment office 78 m2

practice lessons

Mobility Switch:



material delivey



theory lessons

working space

research lessons

working space


Climate Design


material delivey




20 m

Ground floor +0,00 m KULeuven . 2017

ENERGY & MOBILITY ENERGY & MOBILITY Harvesting kinetic energy Energy Harvesting kinetic energy Energy harvesting kinetic energy harvesting kinetic energy

floor lights kinteic road plate PZT transistor pipes 1. selfsustaining sustaining electric bike bike 1. Self electric

Elevated bike path

floor lights floor lights kinteic road plate kinteic PZT road plate PZT transistor transistor pipes pipes

Elevated bike path rotational kintetic Elevated bike pathenergy

stored energy can be used to power the electric bikesteel column created a self sustaining hybrid bike aluminum flash collar

from pedalling is converted into electric energy by the rotor and stored in back wheel.

floor lights kinteic road plate PZT transistor pipes

sealant hardwood wedge dry sand galvanized steel foundation tube steel base plate steel support steel lightning ground

2. Kinetic roadplates plates 2. kinetic road Foundation

Foundation Foundation

Climate Design

1 2


3 7

Climate Design Climate Design




steel column steel column aluminum flash collar aluminum sealant flash collar sealant hardwood wedge hardwood dry sand wedge dry sand steel foundagalvanized galvanized tion tube steel foundation tube steel base plate steel plate steelbase support steel steelsupport lightning ground steel lightning ground (1) cyclist applies potential gravitational energy (weight) onto kinetic road plate (2) which is converted into electric energy by 5 the two magnetic coils (3) This electricity is then stored in the electrodes (4) The electricity is then transferred to the floor lights (5) by the PZT (6) : piezoelectric material via electric wires (7) 7 * Piezoelectric Effect is the ability of certain materials to generate an electric charge in response to applied mechanical stress

NATURE NATURE greenroof detail greenroof detail - wood floor 2 cm -- dry screed layer 15 cm wood floor 2separating cm -- hemp insulation 50 cm dry screed separating layer 15 cm gravel insulation 15 cm -- hemp 50 cm trickle protection -- gravel 15 cm -- CLT slab 25 cm trickle protection - CLT slab 25 cm

- plants 30 cm -- soil plants stailess steel curb 0,6 cm -- soil 30 cm -- waterproofing membrane stailess steel curb 0,6 cm -- hemp insulation 50 cm waterproofing membrane -- CLT 25 cm 50 cm hempslab insulation - CLT slab 25 cm

SCALE 1:20 SCALE 1:20

The curvy roof structure is to collect most efficiently the rainwater. However it tends to create a green house like KULeuven . 2017 effect under it, so a green roof, in addition to the building orientation, ensures a cool temperature for the building KULeuven . 2017 without using electric cooling.

Urban Projects Mapping Brussels elective 1: Kris Scheerlinck

Understanding through mapping- a 2 person group project studying Brussels ring road. We chose 2 sites that seemed very different from each other, the European quarter and midi station. The former being much more rigid and consistent. With about a dozen site visits, we mapped built/unbuilt spaces, different road accessibilities, building functions, private and public collective spaces, time dependent and non time dependent spaces. As different as those 2 sites were different from one another, by the end of the course we noticed a very important trait they sharethe effect of the ring road on both sites is at best neutral. Spaces in both sites would be much better off without the ring road cutting through their middle, completely separating the two sides.

Built / Unbuilt space

European Quarter Site

Midi Site

Built and unbuilt space

Quartier Européen

Pedestrian accessible


Vehicular access Quartier Européen Pedestrian accessible space


Quartier Européen Vehicular accessible space


Design Studio : ERASMUS Metropoles du Sud semester 3: Jacques Brillon

Vision for Loiola, San Sebastian The reconstruction of the station, along with the train tracks has caused a disturbance in the area for years. Frustated by the lack of progress, the inhabitants took to the streets with spray cans, writing “Loiola Rexiste” which is play on words combining Loiola will resist, and re-existas it was. The new station transforms Loiola into a main stop/station from an insignificant transit point. The new project will be the coming together of sports, industry, nature, and culture. Instead of fighting for the presence, they will be part of one whole-industry and nature, sport and mobilty, water and greenery. Pedestrian and bike routes go along the river and cross to the other side where there is a bird watching platform-and it connects to hiking trail that is existing; An extension to the station could provide the much needed mobility exchange point. to encourage inhabitants to leave behind their heavy on the environement cars, rent a bike, buy a train or bus ticket. The basketball court is an existing court that inhabitants frequent. there are 2 of them on the site.

By keeping and ameliorating the basketball courts, the inhabitants are given something fa miliar that has been a part of the site for a long time. The ‘Ur Kirolak’ is a kayaking club. Located under the highway, it is home to the kayak club members, where they train, have activities, and even meet outside and participate in its renovation, as the kids were involved in the construction of the ramp that goes into the water. Combining residential, industrial, cultural, and natural functions in one site. The Industry will be under the highway, as a form of assembly line, from labs to fabrication to testing. At the end of the project we chose one building to design architecturally. This project celebrates the spectrum of spaces from public to private by gradually moving from big inclusive spaces to smaller more intimate spaces.

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䬀䤀刀伀䰀䄀䬀 䌀䰀唀䈀 䠀伀唀匀䔀


Ground floor plan


Typical floor plan

Master Thesis Semester 4: Lilet Breddels Architecture of Peace Love and War in the Built Environment

Under the framework of Architecture of Peace: Post Conflict Architecture. I chose to work on the city of Tripoli, Lebanon in an area divided by politics, sectarianism, and culture. Sunni Tebbaneh against Alawite Jabal Mohsen. Both areas however have the same problems with post war trauma, drug abuse, poverty, and general marginalization from the rest of Tripoli and Lebanon. The goal of this thesis is to find a solution to each site’s issues while bringing them together. It is an area divided by the most ambiguous demarcation line. Because of the geography of the site, the Alawite half is higher from sea level than the Sunni half. so buildings on the demarcation line have their 2 first floors in Tebaneh and last 2 floors in Jabal Mohsen thus making the demarcation line on the z-axis. With my research I explore the role of architecture in separating and bringing people together. To understand peace one must know about conflict. Mapping in detail the interface of war, violence, and other social injustices allows us to better understand how peace can be introduced into the same urban fabric.

Research Questions: Is it possible for architecture to bring enemies together while simultaneously solving the two communities’ main issues? Can peace be forced? : How do you bring people together who do not want to be brought together. What is the role of participation in terms of ownership and longevity of projects? What is the role played by the built environment in conflict and social injustices, and what role can it play in peace keeping and prevention of future conflicts?

Forensic Mapping of the area from videos, images, and stories. I mapped sniper locations, safe locations, exit routes, and presence of army personnel and security measures, to understand better what role the built environment played in not just the conflicts, but also social injustices.

Ahmad, a 12 year old Sunni from Tebbaneh. He is the oldest brother of 6. His father is now in prison for one year and a half. As the oldest, he works in the fish market everyday before school. After school, he helps Abed, a local volunteer clean their neighborhood.

This map shows the division. The white represents the points of safety during the conflicts. Since leaving their buildings dramatically increases their chances of becoming casualties, inhabitants would often open holes in the common walls creating a temporary internal network based on trust.

I Mapped their problems to finally be able to grasp the spatial dimension of peace and how architecture can contribute to it.

To better understand the spatial dimension of poverty and conflict, I followed 2 young men each from an opposite side. Ali, an Alawite from jabal Mohsen is 24 years old (Red). He has participated in all of 22 conflicts, was addicted to drugs from ages 14 until 23, spent 9 months in prison, lost many friends in the conflict, fell in love with a girl from the opposite side, and finally asked for help is now one year sober, trying to help the young men who are in the position he was in.

Stairs on demarcation line, where Ali was shot in the chest as he was preparing a bomb.

The play organized by March NGO

The cafe opened by March where Ali today works, in the administrative office

Jabal Mohsen cemetery, Ali pays respects to his friend Kanjo

Brochures Ali gives out for drug rehabilitation help

The stairs where Ali would hide from the policealso connecting Tebbaneh to Jabal.

Ahmad and his friends under his house

Ahmad helping Abed, a young man who cleans the area twice a week with the children.

My project is a rehabilitation center, for drugs and to teach life skills so when they leave they don’t find the same problems that pushed them to drugs in the first place. The site is right on the demarcation line where the two timelines (Sunni and Alawi) would most often intersect.

To truly understand the community where my project will be, i spent 10 days on site getting to know the people and sharing their daily routines.

With Ahmad I participated in cleaning day. The video of the day can be found on this link:

Another form of Participation is just being there. Sitting in the cafe where the youths gather, getting to know them and listening to their stories.

Post cards from Tebbaneh

Book of post cards as an example of how the site can attract tourism to alleviate the marginalization

The concept is to transform the built environment from an agent of conflict to a spatial agent of peace and co-existence. built environment, spatial agent of conflict: -stairs -rooftops -slopes -alleyways -walls








PROGRAM Rehab Emergency drug overdose response Center: First one in North Lebanon. emergency rooms doctor offices waiting room staff room Counseling Rooms (also for career counseling, not only drug addiction) Administration tourism office/ museum Information office Admin offices Workshops woodworking workshop computer workshop kitchen hair dresser workshop



Full project

Awards and Achievements

One week film making workshop: Hors les Murs, Montpellier ENSAM First Prize Winner 3 minute Film showing daily life at ENSAM - Architecture meets Film

Organized and participated in Architecture Symposium in ENSAM, Metropoles du Sud. Participated in debate about role of events in shaping cities.

BANANA project published in Czech Architecture magazine ERA21

Animation of short chip from Xavier Dolan’s Mommy First Prize, Manipulations, Montpellier

Randa El Hallak - Architecture Portfolio  

Master of Science in Architecture: Resilient and Sustainable Strategies (2016- 2018) Ku Leuven, Campus St Lucas, Gent, Belgium

Randa El Hallak - Architecture Portfolio  

Master of Science in Architecture: Resilient and Sustainable Strategies (2016- 2018) Ku Leuven, Campus St Lucas, Gent, Belgium