28 October 2011

Presentation at World Sustainable Building Conference

Last week three of us attended the World Sustainable Building Conference in Helsinki. The conference approached sustainability from many angles and we heard several presentations on important topics and met a load of interesting people. We even managed to snatch Cameron Sinclair from Architecture for Humanity for a lunch downtown.

On Friday the 21st Maiju held a presentation of the youth center in a session with other participatory projects. It was good to discuss with other people working on similar projects in different parts of the world.

26 October 2011

The design in progress

The design process of the Youth Center is going well. The room program has been altered a little bit according to the feedback we got from the second phase of the design and the architectural concept of the building has been completed. Now we are turning our focus to the technical issues and detailing.

The functional concept of the building can be presented by the above picture. The indoor spaces of the building have been divided into two parts. In the smaller part there are workshops downstairs and dormitories upstairs and in the larger part there are the multipurpose space, the doctor's office and the kitchen downstairs and the classroom, the library and the office upstairs. The heart of the Youth Center is in the shaded outdoor terrace in the middle were the youth and the local people can gather and spend time.

The technical concept can be seen above. The building is lifted up from the ground to protect it from the floods that might reach knee hight in Kouk Khleang. The large eaves and bamboo mesh covered terrace zones protect the users and the structures from rain and sun. The indoor spaces and roof structure are naturally ventilated.

Luckily we have skillful structural engineers to work with us and we are happy to continue our co-operation with them to bring the design to a more detailed level.

03 October 2011

Cambodia facing worst floods in a decade

During the last few days there has been very sad news coming from Cambodia. The country is suffering from worst floods in a decade. Accoring to Guardian, more than 150 people have died and thousands lost their homes.

Also the community in Kouk Khleag is flooding almost annually due to constructions in the nearby rice fields. In the picture below one of the future neighbors of the center is showing us the level of floodwater in some years. Hopefully the residents are surviving trough the extreme conditions.