Svetlana Kozhenov, a freelance designer and a student of architecture, designed a blue print for modern development in Manila, Philippines. His study was an endeavor to revamp the living quarters of a slum area and was part of a course, Architecture in Extreme Environments – Urban Shelter, at the University of Lund in Sweden. He even worked with non governmental organizations in order to obtain the true picture of the problem pervading the slums of Manila.
Svetlana’s design would change the landscape of the Damayang Lagi, a site measuring 1825sqm, and located near the Rodriguez Boulevard, Quezon City, Manila. The plot is currently sheltering over 8200 illegal settlers, almost equivalent to 1643 families. The main reason why this site came under scanner was that river San Juan had been turned into a large dumping bin, and the nearby slum area was deprived of proper amenities including, lack of proper roads, water sewerages, waster management facilities etc. This is where Kozhenov’s innovative design came into the picture.
Bearing a simple concept in mind, he wanted to try and rev up the living area of these mess dwellers. His new housing concept would provide shelter to around 5500 inhabitants, further providing them with better living conditions, and other necessary infrastructure. With these plans in place, the San Juan River would be cleaned up and connected via floating parks right onto the bridge across the next side. These parks would be placed on pantaloons and will be constructed from eco friendly materials.
The design relies heavily on the climatic, social, economical and ecological factors of Philippines. The foundation will be carved purely from concrete, keeping in mind the moldy grounds. The buildings will be constructed from recycled materials, and will be resistant to all types of natural calamities. The roof will be molded and crafted so as to ensure maximum rainwater harvesting for the dwellers. Overall, a lot of recycled plastic would be used in the making of these residential abodes.
With the simple concept in tow and an easy to understand plan, the whole concept should see the day of light soon. If this plan is actioned, a lot of people would shower their blessings on Svetlana for his ingenious housing idea.