Primary Authors: Dr. Mohamed Maher Mathbout
Architectural collaborators: Beletage S.R.L.
Specialty collaborators: -
The basic idea of the concept aims on one hand to bring a higher concentration of people on the main roads and to reduce concentration towards the inside ; on the other hand traffic will be reduced within the individual zones.
That‘s why the highest density residential zones are only on the main roads. Their heights are reduced towards the district‘s interior.
1) High density
Apartment complexes are located on the roads: A, B, C, D, E, F.
The basic element of the apartment block consists of two limbs that stretch out at different angle.The direction of the apartment blocks faces away from the direct sunshine. By the positioning of these two limbs, an open spaceis created, which in turn offers semi private activities.
The mixed-use element (commercial, offices, .etc) with only two stories binds the two limbs of the apartment block. These mixed-use stories are positioned on the main street.
2) Medium density
Duplex houses, for example, are connected to the secondary street: G, H, I, J.
The Duplex houses consist of three floors and have 6 apartments.
The car parking spaces for these types of houses is located underground.
3) Low density
Single family houses following the duplex houses are located towards the edges of the residential houses.
DIVISION OF THE PLANNING AREA
The main roads (A, B, C, D, E) and 4 more secondary roads (F, G, H, I, J) divide „The Colonia Sopor area“ into 11 districts: I, II, .. XI. The through traffic does not have the possibility to drive within the districts.
In the middle of the entire planning area is a car-free trade zone like 'city center', which can therefore host numerous and varied events.
The car parking spaces for the residential houses with the mixed use building is located in the underground.
The composition of the basic elements of the apartment blocks includes a public green space.
The community life shall have meeting places and dedicated spaces for leisure and fun, as well as for abilities learning and development.
The proposed functions will be commercial spaces , promenade area, collective and individual housing, education, cultural and medical services with an additional green space that occupies 17,8% of the area.
Public square - it is the main urban space than encourages social cohesion, as well as urban experiments with leisure, culture and socializing facilities. Here can happen various events, such as city fairs, concerts or large meeting spaces, which increases community life. The public square is flexible and it is easy to transform for temporary events - by allowing access to the necessary equipment, placement of stages, tribunes, stands, tents, tables, etc. with access to facilities. Also, the everyday stands are equipped with solar energy systems for sustainable purpose.
Typical urban image - public spaces that are used as a connection between the living area, commercial area and the green area. The space configuration adapts to the pedestrian's needs by offering a bicycle traffic system and dedicated spaces for leisure and fun that can be used by various age groups or various social groups.
Education area - it is directly connected with the sports area, expanding to the greenery areas near the Becas river. This connexion offers a better quality to the life of the pupils by bringing the leisure and socialising facilities near them, also looking after their health.
The green area near Becas river - its purpose is to offer for the community life a greenery plot with pedestrian alleys, bicycle lane and flood protection measures. It is a public green space that encourages socializing between different age groups and various social groups by offering places dedicated for leisure and fun, as well as meeting spaces for debates, theme meetings, parties, drama clubs, etc.
The scheme represents how the height of the buildings is decreasing from the main circulation to the inside of the areas. The corners are accentuated by higher buildings dedicated for the office, commercial and living zones. This decrease is needed for the reduction of the concentration towards the inside of the main zones and the reduction of the intense traffic from the interior of the main zones. The main mixed-function areas are in the high buildings near the main circulation for the avoidance of mixing the non-motorised transport with the main roads. In this way, the quality of the public space will increase by becoming the "living room of the city", by adapting to the pedestrian's needs, and not just a pass-through space.
Analysing existing vs. future context
Phase 1 - COMUNITY ENGAGEMENT - reconnecting with the community to understand their wishes.
Why? So now in order to have an ideal usage of public space we need to first understand the wishes of the current owners, if they are willing to collaborate with each-other and sell or invest in future developments. This concept shows them what is the potential of the zone. From those who responded at the survey, most of them (as much as 90%) want to build individual housing for themselves, few of them want to invest in offices (6%) and commercial zones (less than 3,5%). We observe a tendency of a low density district, but where all the land is owned by private parties. This results in a lack of land for public functions. Now the analyzed area doesn't have any usable roads (only mud roads), the timing is perfect for such an investment which a vision for the next century.
Phase 2 - ADAPTING - the current concept has the capacity of adapting to new requests evoqued by the community through flexible zoning patterns which can accommodate multiple designs of the buildings and reorganization of public space. Proposed functions include flats, offices, public utility, commercial, individual residential and duplexes. All of these features are mostly equal distributed, each zone can function independently from others. By thinking the zones in such manner, the concept gives investors flexibility enough in which order should the zones be constructed.
Phase 3 - PHASES - after the infrastructure development is in place, all the other features can be build in any order. Of course, ideally it is to build public facilities first in order to attract investors. The concept gives the possibility that few individuals can build together by forming owners associations. So if a zone receives the needed infrastructure, they could immediately start developing it. The public facilities can be built first because they won't lack users. This concept is developed in such manner that it is an extension of the city that coexists with the adjacent districts which can, but it is not desirable, to work even independently.