Gems of Conakry is a modular and sustainable system for middle income housing implementation in West Africa.
On one side, the strategy addresses the specificity of the program, and on the other it responds to the physical and social context.
Whereas comfort, durability and budget are essential components on the user's side; it is essential to bring the culture's core values at the heart of the project.
Public spaces are scarce and residential compounds usually very dense. They have the tendency to be overpopulated, which leaves no or very little margin for activities and interaction to happen. Gems of Conakry is not just a house for the inhabitants. It encourages display, gatherings and performances. It is envisioned as a holistic adaptive intervention, with a unique and distinctive identity.
The footprint of a city or a development is determinant in its impact on the environment. Most of the residential developments in the area are expected to be off the power grid, but exposed to abundantly available natural resources such as very fertile earths, generous precipitation, strong suns and huge reserves of bauxite. As a response, the power roof incorporates solar panels and a rainwater collection system to be used in the bathroom areas and could be used for irrigation when needed. The morphology of the houses stretches in length, with operable louvers on both sides, to allow for cross-ventilation in order to stabilize temperatures and humidity levels in this tropical monsoon climate.
As an overall strategy, a power roof plugs in to every 6x6m module. Those modules then incrementally assemble to cater for 2 or 3 bedrooms villas, as well as 2 or 3 floors apartment buildings. Those units are placed on a 54x54m green platform, with various configurations triggering multiple activities: urban farming, children's playgrounds, green spaces, crafts and markets. The 6x6m grid can expand or shrink, allowing the housing unit to grow or decrease according to the housing market feasibility and demand in the area where the project will be implemented.
Most importantly, the precious looking power roofs give the project a remarkable and enchanting impact, as a celebration of the valuable resources found in the area.