CAPTURING WHAT’S THERE :Enabling Through Open Infrastructure WHAT DIPLOMA PROJECT, BERGEN SCHOOL OF ARCHITECTURE, FEB. - AUG. 2011STUDENTS SILJE KLEPSVIK / firstname.lastname@example.org / +47 936 76 783 STINE BJAR / email@example.com / +47 950 36 240 TUTORS DEANE SIMPSON / SIXTEN RAHLFF / VIBEKE JENSEN WHERE LUANDA, ANGOLA
Luanda (Angola), a city of 6 million informal dwellers, faces greatchallenges related to it’s rapid growth. Our project proposes analternative to the existing One Million Housing Plan by provid-ing infrastructure instead of housing. We see the vast numberof people as a great resource and key to achieve a sustainabledevelopment. The project aim to acknowledge and empowerboth the human and physical assets already there, by exploringthe performative potential of infrastructure as an active urbanecology providing accessibility and spatial qualities.
PROJECT DESCRIPTIONBACKGROUNDAngola has undergone 500 years of Portuguese colonial power, followed by a 20-year Also apparent was the high degree of productivity and initiatives within the informal sec-devastating civil war. The war forced millions to migrate to the larger cities which were tor and settlements, the extraordinary vibrant and pulsating Angolan urban life, and theconsidered safe, leading to a tremendously rapid urban growth, particularly in the capital powerful human networking and social collectiveness. Not to mention a highly efficientLuanda. Due to the loss of agricultural land and the urban advantage, the urban growth water-usage and a resource awareness that we in the West have a lesson to draw upon.has continued to escalate in post-war Angola. INFRASTRUCTUREIn only the last two decades, Luanda has grown from 800 000 to 8 million inhabitants. We see the role of infrastructure as crucial in order to create a foundation for demo-This has caused the capacity of the city’s infrastructure and urban logic to break down. cratic access to urban advantages and basic needs for the city’s recidents. InfrastructureAs Africa’s top-oil producer, the country has experienced an economic boom, bringing can also act as a spatial organizer, framing the urban Angolan life.Luanda to the top of the list of the world’s most expensive cities to live in. Concurrently,80% of Luanda’s inhabitants live in musseques (informal settlements and urban slums), Infrastructure can be understood as an urban ecology, embodying the natural and socialmaterializing in a rapidly expanding low-rise carpet surrounding the city core. It is evident cycles of the city.that the oil revenues do not reach the vast majority of the urban poor, and the urbandivide is being further intensified. RAILWAY The recently reopened railway going from the city centre of Luanda towards the interiorThe rapid pace of the urbanization of Luanda is a weighing challenge for the city, and the of the country, will act as a generator for a natural densification along the line. This is theurban planning of the coming decade will be a crucial factor in determining the future of starting point for our project, where we see the railway as the base for additional infra-Luanda. The Government has recently launched a One million housing plan, addressing structural interventions aiming to facilitate the existing informal settlements and futurethe overcrowding and need for basic accommodation. The plan’s aim is to build one mil- densification.lion new homes by the end of 2012 for the urban poor. CROSS-SECTIONTo execute the plan the government is mainly contracting Chinese and other foreign With the railway stations, which are naturally a meeting-point and hub, as the startingconstruction companies instead of utilizing local labor. The housing projects are located gates for further infrastructural development strategies, we work with a cross-sectionfar outside the urban core. creating an augmented poverty trap as the spatial distance to growing out of this central point. The linear development can be seen as a first step in anurban facilities increases. In addition, urban informal settlements situated on valuable land evolving and larger system. We are looking at how this cross-section can be played out inin the city centre have been relocated by force, which easily leads to agony and political one of the stations, in an area called Viana.unrest. CASE STUDY: VIANAStruggling to meet the escalating implications of a war-torn country experiencing rapid Viana Station is located in the urban perpheri of Luanda. Lately it has experienced a rapidurban growth, the Government should undoubtedly be accredited for its aim at poverty growth in population as housing prices are a lot cheaper in the periphery than in the ex-reduction and at rebuilding the country. The hasty solutions built on foreign ideals can pensive city centre, and as the reopening of the railway has made the city and its facilitieshowever pose even larger challenges in the near future. The danger of building up large more accessible. Economically, the railway is now by far the cheapest public transport inuniform neighborhoods consisting primarily of social housing and mainly designed as re- Luanda, and physically, the travel goes about three times faster by train than by car duecidential hubs, segregated and isolated from the rest of the urban society, can foster social to the major traffic congestions in Luanda.discontent and ghetto cities. BRIDGINGTURNING PROBLEM INTO RESOURCE Viana is physically divided in two by the railway and the highway. The two sides of VianaThe rapid growth of Luanda imply major problems, but also create outstanding oppor- are also divided in their character, with one formal side built originally by the Portuguesetunities. By understanding that problems are also opportunities, hidden resources can colonisers, and one informal side with poor access to water, sanitation and electricity. Thebecome visible. By capturing and acknowledging the potential that lies within existing bridging of this divide is crucial for obtaining an inclusive and diverse urban environment.structures, as well as within the vast human resource, a city can become less dependent Our project works with this cross-section, bridging the spatial and social division, andon large-scale, top-down, and costly development, and can encourage local initiative and facilitating accessibility and inter-active civic spaces.breed productivity. THE VOICE OF THE ARCHITECTReacting to the one million housing plan, we argue that infrastructure should be provided In the new urban age that we are in, we need to reinterrogate our perception aboutinstead of housing. what sustainability is, and question our established ideals. As architects we should take a stronger part in the discussion around the larger questions about the performance of theOur argumentation is accentuated by the report from Development Workshop, a non- city, and dare to take on a more holistic thinking.governmental organization working with bottom-up strategies and extensive research inLuandas’ musseques, which notes that: The African continent will experience the strongest urban growth among all regions of the world until 2050 (UNHABITAT). Luanda is predicted to be among the four most“Poor urban residents identified water supply and better sanitation facilities as problems rapidly growing cities on the continent, and the development taking place at this presentfor which they require assistance (...). Housing and constructions, however, were not iden- in Luanda should be of extreme interest for both architects and planners.tified by the poor urban resident as problems for which they needed assistance.” With our project Capturing What‘s There we approach a development of a new breedFIRST HAND IMPRESSIONS of urbanity, rooted in physical and social qualities already there. We see potentials of aSpending one month in Luanda, we experienced the city’s infrastructural challenges first- more sustainable coexistence based on resource awareness and participation. The proj-hand. The missing capacities for water, power and food supply were evident, so was the ect is a contribution in the debate on what we see as one of the greatest challenges inlack of sanitation and waste management, the loss of agricultural land, and the chaotic our time –sustainable urban living.traffic situations.
AT STAKELUANDA Areas of forced migration LUANDA CENTRE RE CO NS TR UC TE D RA ILW AY n tio Sta na Via 1 million housing projects LUANDA
LUANDA: A CITY IN TRANSITIONAfrica will experience the strongest growth among all regions of the world until 2050 (UN-HABITAT). From 2000to 2030, Africa’s urban population will grow from 294 million to 742 million people, an increase of 152%. In theforecasts, Luanda will be among the four most rapidly growing cities on the African continent. The EconomistThe rapid growth of Luanda will both imply major problems and create outstanding opportunities. The challengesare obvious. They range from infrastructure gaps and missing capacities for power, water, and food supply to loss ofagricultural land and chaotic traffic situations, not to mention the huge health problems originating from air pollution,lack of sanitation, and huge piles of garbage. FORMALIn this challenging urban haze, we need to understand problems are also INFORMALopportunities. Clever city planning methods, innovative waste managementprocedures, and cost efficient water treatment technologies, belong to thiscategory of opportunities. “The key globalization issue for Luanda how more people can be productively engaged in the development process”. Allan Cain. Architect, and founder and head of Development Workshop, Luanda. Before the war, most people supprted themselves by Angola has been a Portugese small-scale farming. 1975 2002 colony since the 15th century Independence Peace declarance 1500 PORTUGESE COLONY CIVIL WAR 1900 1910 1920 1930 1940 1950 1960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2010 09 75 87 02 04 05 09 massive building activity New highrise seafront, Typical colonial city residential blocks from Wealthier resitential area, townhouses the mid 20th century (5-8 floors) Informal housing, usually one-story Ca 80% of Luandas population Original colonial seafront and villas with high fences New promenede Mucceque areas FORMAL INFORMAL
THE URBAN ADVANTAGE & OVERCROWDINGThe urban advantage implicates the abundanceand variety of goods, services, amenities and “This is where the possibilities are, 8000000opportunities, as well as social connections or possibilities for creating a life and arranging employment”.‘’human capital’’. In the cities there is also a high Pedro Sapista. Police / Micro Finance.concentration and availability of social, culturaland health facilities. Other benefits are the accessto water and sanitation, and transportationnetworks. 7000000 CabindaRAPID URBANIZATIONDuring the civil war people migrated to Luanda as it was considered Luanda Luanda Malanjethe safest city to live in. The war left the country devastated by mines,and the degradation of the soil left large rural areas useless for farming.People were forced to leave the periferi and migrate to the city for better Huambo 6000000 Benguelaopportunities. LubangoLuanda experienced an immense growth, and the migration to the cityhas only accelerated with the post war economic boom which hasstrengthened the hope in the urban advantage. 5000000COUNTRY-ESCAPEAngola is one of the world most land mine affected countries. It wasestimated a spread of two land mines for each inhabitant during the war.Luanda was build originally by the portuguese to house 400 000 people. 1 man = 2 landmines LUANDAS EXPLOSIVEToday the population exceeds 6 million, which means a ten-doubling of GROWTH IN POPULATIONthe population in only ten years. This immense urbanization, today at arate of 55.8 per cent, is a hard pressure on the city, and the Government 4000000is struggling to meet the challenges of overpopulation and poverty.80 % of the population in Luanda live in informal settlements. With theimmense growth comes fewer access to facilities that make urban livingpossible, such as water and electricity, and the rapid growth coming outof a 25-year civil war has caused a huge bottleneck in infrastructure, mostnotably transportation, housing, public utilities and fixed communications. 3000000CITY EXPANSION: A LARGE DIVISION IN FORMAL AND INFORMAL SETTLEMENTS 2000000 FORMAL SETTLEMENTS INFORMAL SETTLEMENTS 1000000Luanda 1964 Luanda 1986 Luanda 2001 Luanda 2010 1700 1850 1900 1950 2000
GROWTH VS DEVELOPMENTOIL AND THE ECONOMIC BOOMAngola is Africa’s top oil producer and among the fastest growing economies onthe continent with a growth rate of 10 % per year since the end of the civil warin 2002. Oil accounts for almost 90 % of the country’s exports, and 83 % of its Human GDP per capita Development Index PPP US $national income. The majority of it’s revenues come from oil and diamond exports. 0.60 5500 2010The oil-rich country is a magnet for foreign workers who push up already high pricesinflated by a reliance on imports. 0.58 5000 0.56 4500 2 100 000 bDespite the abundant natural resources, output per capita is among the world’s Madagascar 0.54 4000lowest. Subsistence agriculture provides the main livelihood for 85% of the population. 0.52 3500 1991The growth in population is outstripping the rapid economic growth, and together 0.50 3000 1991with the damages from the 25-year civil war it has put a strain on the country. In 0.48 2500Luanda, large-scale slums, known locally as musseques, are suffering from poor access 0.46 2000to water, electricity, and proper sanitation. 0.44 1500 0.42 1000Today several Chinese companies have been contracted to large-scale projects of Angola 0.40 500 2000construction and infrastructure to repair the country. All in exchange for Angola’s oil, HDI and GDP data refers to 2010 as reported in the HDR 2010. 750 000 bb/dand a deal that 70% of tenders for public works must go to Chinese firms. 2000 750 000 bb/d 2010 2 100 000 bb/d 2015 (estimat 2010 2 100 000 bb/d 3 000 000 bb/ 2015 (estimated) 3 000 000 bb/d 2015 3 000 000 bb/d =100 000 bb/d Oil Exported =100 000 bb/d Oil Used Internally in Angola OIL BOOMBUILDING BOOMFive years ago there were only two high-rise buildings in this skyline.0
TOP-DOWN APPROACH & THE FOREIGN IDEALThe horizon of Luanda is in constant transformation, with numerous prestigious high-rise building-projects about to shape its skyline. It reveals a desire to exhibit an image of a world-class city. Incontradiction, slum dwellers constitute the majority of the urban population.Most building materials in new constructions in Angola are imported, along with the constructionworkers, and the design repeatingly take on a foreign look with large glass-facades and extensiveuse of steel.The importation of foreign ideals and techniques is not necessarily the best solution to addressthe local climate conditions or the Angolan urban lifestyle. In addition it should be argued thatan emphasis on local materials and techniques could boost local production and create job There are widespread construction projects in Luanda, many of them housing projectsopportunities for the Angolan people. contracted to Chinese companies. Most of the rebuilding is sponsored by Angola’s government. Chinese large-scale planned city being build 30 km outside of Luanda city. Mainly planned a residencial hub for the lower-income class. Monolithic blocks and striking uniformity, looking more like China than Southern Africa. China came and proposed a “China house”. The Brasilians did the same. The buildings are not adapted for Angolan life. And the quality is not good.” Mauricio. Architect and Professor at ULA “Luanda Sul is the opposite of Luanda calls itself the “New Dubai”. The similarities are evident, with several show-off development. Sure, it’s creating projects aimed to give a portrait of wealth and high-class. We teach the architectural history of There are more than 100 Chinese something, but development is creating europe and try to bring what we learn construction companies in Luanda, and these works for people, like jobs and houses. from European and the Portuguese are responsible for about 90% of all new This is nothing. It’s only for rich people development to Angola construction work. They are working on oil who have houses.” Maria Joao. Teacher in Architecture, Lusiada University in Luanda credit. Justine Pinto de Andrade, director of the economics Hermenegildo Nunda, BI department at Catholic University in Luanda.
THE URBAN DIVIDE“In Luanda you will find all the indexes you are looking for.You name it, you will find it.” You want to find the richest of the richest, with five swimmingpools, with excess water spilling over; you will THE MOST EXPENSIVE CITY IN THE WORLD Ratings of july 2011 puts Luanda on top of the most expensive cities in find it. You want to find the poorest who do not even the world. This rating do obviously not include the informal city in their have access to one cup of water; you will find it. measures. A standard flat in the centre of Luanda costs $10,000-$15,000 Joao Handanga Gil Administration Manager, Dof Subsea Angola a month to rent or at least $1million to buy. Many urban dwellers are pushed to the outskirts of the city because of the high cost of housing. 20% FORMAL SETTLEMENTThe rapid urbanization in Luanda has broughtan even larger share of urban residence intototal poverty, making out a huge challenge forAngola in the coming decades. Along with theincrease in urban poor, the informal sector isgrowing largely. The development taking placeseem to further a polarization of groups, with 80%social housing projects being built far isolatedfrom the city.The transformation of the city should call fora more nuanced apprehension of the slums, INFORMAL SETTLEMENTwhich, apart from its negative implications, alsodemonstrates substantial economic potentialand productivity. A sustainable growthof the city should acknowledge thedynamics of all layers within the urbanfabric, encourage integration and fosterdiversity. “I would say there are three key issues that are important, not “The state do not acknowledge the only for the city itself but for the whole of mankind. One is the problem of mobility. Another is the problem of sustainability. qualities and productivity that exist within The other is social diversity and co-existence”. the informal structures in Luanda.” Mauricio. Architect and Professor at ULA Jaime Lerner. Architect and Mayor of Curitiba, Brasil.
RE-ALLOCATION; A SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT? Massive seafront highrise development FORCED MIGRATION ...OUTSIDE THE CITY GOVERNMENT OFFERS AN APPARTMENT IN ONE OF THE 1 MILLION HOUSING PROJECTS “Re-settlement is the term the Government is using for the forced movement of dwellers from high value areas in the city centre to periferic locations. The urban slum-areas will be replaced it with high- class, multi-storey buildings.” Allan Cain. Architect, and founder and head of Development Workshop, Luanda.1. THE GOVERNMENT PLAN 2. THE INFORMAL DWELLERS 3. THE NEW SOCIAL HOUSING CITYThe urban sea-front is high value land with its pictur- Today, the sea-front surrounding the city is inhabited by informal Addressing the need for social housing, large-scale projects are beingesque view and closeness to the beach. A develop- dwellers who depend on the cities opportunities and networks. built 30 km outside the city, where the informal dwellers are offeredment of high-class prestiguos projects including casinos, The informal settlements remind you that Luanda, with its immense apartments. The large distances to work and urban amenities doeshotels, luxury apartments and commerce, are planned economic boom, still faces many challenges. The Government see however cause a worsened poverty trap. It also require huge investmentfor the area. the informality as an unwanted portrait of poverty. in connecting the new with the old if congestion is to be avoided.
“The flats are not prepared for the Angolan people and it will become difficult for them to adapt to this new imposed lifestyle. In the high-rise city you take the responsibility and the engagement away from the people.” You can critizice the projects happening in Luanda, like the sea-front development, if they are good or not good, but that is not important. The problem is how the people are treated. They are treated like rubbish, moved far out of the city centre. Mauricio. Architect and Teacher in Architecture, Lusiada University in Luanda.THE GREAT NUMBER 8 appartments á 8 stories = 68 appartments, housing about 200 inhabitants (3,1 person per unit) 1 000 000 / 200 = 5000 blocks