Rome, like so many major cities around the world, is struggling to provide its growing population with enough affordable housing. The Rome Collective Living Challenge Competition, organized by Bee Breeders, invited participants to propose creative solutions for collective living in the Eternal City, ideally by implementing affordable and community-friendly solutions within existing building stock.
This competition is part of Bee Breeders’ Affordable Housing Crisis
design series, which has, over the past year, introduced a number of
proposals to address the global demand for urban housing, including London, Sydney, and Paris (still open for submissions!). Some of these submissions and others have been included in the inaugural
print publication by ARCHHIVE: Issue 1: What is Affordable Housing?
Following are the winning submissions of the Rome challenge:
1st Prize Winner + BB Student Award: Vita del Muro
by Karin Frykholm, Lisa Fransson, Rron Bexheti (Sweden)
Jury commentary: "'Vito del Muro - Co-inhabiting the Aurelian Wall' targets Rome’s 19km-long, 3rd-century defensive fortification as a generator of future housing stock for the city. The project focuses on demonstrating that the wall has not only resilience, but also serves to be permanently useful for Rome’s greater good. The submission offers a simply-constructed unit design that might be implemented along the intact portions of the historic structure. Adapting to the linear form of the wall, residential units are placed side-by-side and connected by a communal living space. The jury wonders, however, how many units can the intact portions of the wall feasibly support, and is this enough to begin to solve Rome’s housing crisis?"
2nd Prize Winner: Anti-Isolato
by George Guida (Italy)
Jury commentary: "'Anti-Isolato' details a method for transforming a typical residential Roman street block, which it claims to be an insular courtyard enclosed by a perimeter of residential buildings. The design proposes opening this inner court to the city street by removing one of the block’s sides and, furthermore, by introducing a number of collective programs within the block. The project presents a case study of historical Roman social housing projects and extracts the lessons learned from their failures. To overcome the isolated nature of these constructions, the ‘new’ block is populated with collective working spaces and collective living units linked to a perimeter atrium open to the courtyard. These collective spaces are balanced by private residential units that face the streets. The jury found the drawings and ideas to be excellent and clear. The jury also asks: By using the strategies shown here, can existing blocks also be transformed in a more sensitive way, rather than through significant reconstruction?"
3rd Prize Winner: R[h]ome: diverse community living
by Philip Kolevsohn (South Africa)
Jury commentary: "'R(h)ome' converts an existing structure into an alternate form of housing to demonstrate the importance of adaptation over new construction in such a historic city. The proposal states: 'To build something new in the center of Rome is virtually impossible, yet the large amount of underutilized spaces, especially in religious complexes, offers new potential for creative adaptation in the struggle to provide the diverse housing needs of a contemporary city.' The project converts the historic guesthouse of the 14th-century Chiesa e Monastero di Santa Brigida into a 21st-century co-living facility. Through a number of sensitive design considerations, the existing floor layout is adapted to a variety of different residential unit types, shared outdoor spaces, and a communal coffee shop, dining area, and kitchen. The jury would love to see this project expanded to include a range of different Roman sites."
BB Green Award Winner: COOP - a construction system for city-actors
by Isabel Magalhães, Rafaela Barcelos, Ana Marta Lins, Camilla Rodrigues (Brazil)
To see the competition's honorable mentions and read interviews with the winners listed above click here.
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