School construction in Sierra Leone
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Architecture.
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After years of British rule and a decade of civil unrest, rural communities in Sierra Leone were left with the residues of a colonial mentality and the psychological, physical and economic ravages of war. As a result, people are trapped in a mindset that discards vernacular architecture as obsolete and unpractical, and that associates modernity with the "concrete and zinc" model. Thriving to overcome extreme poverty, these villages plan to develop stronger economies and encourage education by building permanent school structures. The aim of this thesis is not to just provide villages with an economical school design, but to inspire a new mentality towards architecture and a construction system that can adapt to a diverse range of situations and be applied in Sierra Leone and beyond. In order for them to propose a new architecture; I suggest they 5 look back to their roots. The only way to produce sustainable and practically cost-free buildings is by making the most of locally abundant and renewable resources, such as earth to their full potential, thus giving an effective and interesting twist to traditional architecture. The new system breaks up the school into subunits that serve as a "kit of parts" that may be arranged to suit any condition. Furthermore, these individual units must take into consideration function, daylighting, waterproofing, and ventilation. When an entire community comes together to create exciting and innovative architecture, a new window of opportunity will be opened and a better standard of living can be reached.
Thesis (S.B. in Art and Design)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Architecture, 2009.Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (p. 71).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Architecture
Massachusetts Institute of Technology