Photo: Flavia Matei
Botswana is a middle-income country that is experiencing rapid cultural change and urbanisation, leading to an increasing demand for new homes and social spaces, both in the capital Gaborone and in the villages around it. Its already extreme climate with very hot summers and cold winters is exacerbated by the effects of climate change. The housing supply is struggling to meet the demand in terms of quantity, but often also in terms of quality. Many new build houses respond poorly to the climatic and cultural context. Materials used are often imported from as far away as Asia, and have a large ecological footprint. The change from living in relatively small village communities to living in larger urban neighbourhoods calls for new types of community spaces.
In October 2019, BASEHabitat students visited Botswana on a research trip to learn about the local context, and to forge vital connections with local project partners, including homeowners, architects and quantity surveyors and with organisations such as the University of Botswana and Botswana Housing Corporation, the government agency in charge of delivering social housing.
The students are now developing a range of proposals for improving housing conditions and developing neighbourhoods that respond to the cultural, climatic, ecological and economic constraints. These proposals operate within different parts of the housing sector in Botswana, both commercial and public.
The proposals will be presented to and further developed with our partners in Botswana, forming the basis for a longer term dialog and cooperation.
“We aim to investigate the topic of housing in Botswana and to develop solutions that are architecturally ambitious and environmentally friendly.”Flavia Matei (teacher BASEhabitat)
Photos: Flavia Matei
Research and Design
Franziska Brandenstein, Stefanie Hueber, Adnane Karouach, Daniela Lockowandt, Annette Strack, Lena Lisbeth Teufl, Julia Treitinger, Jamie Wagner, Vinzent Wallner
Sigi Atteneder, Elisa Engel, Flavia Matei