Vahid visited the site for the Enga Provincial Hospital in Papua New Guinea; a tremendously exciting project! WAMO Studio will master plan and design the housing for the staff and their families; Shepley Bulfinch of Boston is designing the hospital. This is the largest project undertaken by the country since gaining their independence! The housing will include dormitory style housing, single family homes, a community building and a manned entrance.
The design will use a butterfly motif as the butterflies of Papua New Guinea are world-renowned. This will show in the structural elements as well as the color designs. One of our primary goals with the housing is to have them independent of fossil fuels. With careful site planning and intelligent material choices, this should be possible. We are particularly interested in concrete block with insulation factors, like Aerblock, as perhaps these could be made in the country. The ideal scenario is to create jobs and support the local economy rather than importing pre-fab units.
The project is to be a model of an integrated design process, seeking to capitalize on the inherent qualities of the site, environment, and program. The approach to efficient development will be through the innovative use of common materials, the simplification of systems and assemblies, and the alignment of design with typical construction sequencing. Durability will be achieved through the use of well-aging materials that develop patinas rather than those that incur traditional maintenance costs. We will strive to design passive rather then active systems and create harmonious spaces that hold enduring architectural beauty. Aesthetically, our approach is to design diverse and flexible public and private spaces where people are comfortable and integrated with their surroundings.
We are in the initial design stages so we will keep you posted!