POSTWAR ARCHITECTURE

Standort: Aleppo, Syrien

Architekt: Arda Karasu, Yaser Hantouch

Energiekonzept: Arda Karasu

TGA: Arda Karasu

Stand: Ideenwettbewerb

Buildings, whether old or new, are witnesses to the history.  The concept Sourions, a combination of Souriya and Gabions, aims to recognize the story of Syria using the ruins of the old buildings as a bridge between the present and the past.

The goal is to release a catalyst effect that emanates from the centre of conflict to revitalize the city of Aleppo. It is one of the most affected cities carrying a historical value as a world heritage city. There is a need for affordable social housing that connects the past and the future of the Syrian people. The project will serve as both as a reminder of the recent conflict in the country and symbol of hope for the country’s future. It is developed as a nation-wide response to the post-war architectural development in Syria. The intention is not to decorate the city with new urban and architectural elements, rather to solve efficiently the housing problem.

The concept focuses on key references relevant to urban and architectural heritage in Syria. It is also a pluralist perspective that is shaped by domestic realities like economic and social structures and framed by aesthetic and functional considerations. The concept addresses not only a post-war development but also serves as a reminder to avoid future conflict. Collective memory can be a unifying force and a vehicle for reconciliation. Preservation of the sense of place is the main aim of the architectural concept. The developed buildings are not replicas or facsimile reconstructions.  

What remains of the war-torn cityscape will be salvaged. Valuable material will be used directly for reconstruction and the leftover material will be repurposed for use in the gabions. The material will be sorted in situ and scale down the size using portable shredders. The project aims to reuse any kind of material that has a thermal mass. Beside its historical connection, it is also an approach towards sustainability. The repurposing of destroyed buildings will both present an evidence of the past and also act as an affiliation for re-immigrants.

The concepts aims to preserve the patterns of the city Aleppo. Damaged buildings which are habitable after minor interventions will be amended with prefabricated modules. Completely destroyed buildings will be replaced with new ones.

The urgency for fast re-construction of the city, lack of building materials, and economic conditions are evident. For these reasons, the concept incites the population to participate in the construction, where volumetric modular methods enable it. Active participation of the inhabitants during preparation of gabions is desired in order to normalize the social connections within all people living in Syria. Like in other successful city re-construction examples, this may lead to higher efficiency. Modern concepts based on minimum living standards combined with pre-fabricated volumetric construction have been developed since 20s. They are revised and improved for the socio-cultural needs of Syria. The modules are developed to enable contemporary living standards with interchangeable floor plans. They provide natural light and air movement while still maintaining the privacy of the inhabitants. 

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