• Slideshow Image 1

    © Freude/Jungwirth

  • Slideshow Image 1

    © Iris Nöbauer

  • Slideshow Image 1

    © Annkathrin Freude

  • Slideshow Image 1

    © Freude/Jungwirth

  • Slideshow Image 1

    © Freude/Jungwirth

  • Slideshow Image 1

    © Annkathrin Freude

  • Slideshow Image 1

    © Annkathrin Freude

YUNGAS centre for research and education / 2016 -2017 / Yungas, Bolivien

 

Research and Design

Paul Jungwirth

Annkathrin Freude

Iris Nöbauer (only research)

 

 

Design supervision

Roland Gnaiger

 

Client

NGO EVA Yungas

 

EVA Yungas Logo.png

YUNGAS

The Yungas forests in Bolivia reach from the highlands of the Andes Mountains down to the Amazon forest. Their steep majestic hills are humid and warm and often covered by slowly wafting mist. Only 200 years ago people have started to settle here, aymara and quechua tribes came down form the Andes and brought their traditions. The new inhabitants until now are living their old traditions and could not adapt to the new surrounding, in questions of agriculture, energy consumption or housing.

They were used to build earthen houses with grass roofs in the Andes and did not adapt their way of building to the new humid climate and frequent rain. Wet foundations and molding roofs made the houses ver uncomfortable and non-durable.

The region offers perfect climate conditions for coffee, cirtrus and also coca. The latter is one of the biggest problems in the area, as people are burning down the forsts to plant coca, harming the already thin humus layer. The cultivation of the coca plant is done very intensively, leaving the land unfertile in only a few years. People then move on to other areas, leaving the exhausted soil void, exposed to erosion.

The Yungas is a region with high potential for self supply, but it is not used - food, construction material, everything is imported from La Paz. Problems as e.g. waist management or water treatment, sustainable land use are not solved. The negative consequences are even worse, as the region has high touristic potential and more and more people come to visit the Yungas, while the basic infrastructure is not organised.

That is why the NGO EVA Yungas decided to build a centre for research and education on sustainable use of natural resources. Local people could meet there with students and young scientists from all around the world, to use their ideas and know how for improving the situation in the Yungas.

While the network of intrested universities in Bolivia and Europe is growing, in a first step BASEhabitat develops a basic desing for the centre - workshops, seminar rooms, simple accommodation - using earth as building material, so the same houses can be an example for modern construction with traditional material.

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