2012 – 2013

HOUSE BY HOUSE typologies for educational buildings
Support education through intelligent buildings
Democratic Republic Congo


Photo: Corinna König

The diploma thesis project ‘House by House’ arose from a cooperation programme involving CARITAS AUSTRIA, CRAterre and BASEhabitat. The architecture students travelled to an area in the southeastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, 350 km from Lubumbashi, the provincial capital of Katanga. The central topic was access to education in this remote region. At the start there was a workshop in the provincial capital of Lubumbashi, during which two classroom units were built for a school. Then the students travelled to the project area for the research stage. The area contains 30 villages in a radius of 100 km and has been run by Salesians for 70 years. During the design process, two prototypical school projects and a design for a girls’ boarding school were created.

Project: Elke Schmedler

Project: Markus Brückner

“We are travelling to the furthest tip of the Congolese territory: four architecture students; a Congolese builder behind the wheel; his constant companion - a true Congolese all-rounder, his trademark being that he was both a former medical student and a car mechanic; one of the workshop participants who is using this as a trip back to his native village; and a French engineer. Beforehand, others spoke of 'the edge of the world' - a paradise ... although lacking many things. There are schools in some of the villages; churches in all of them. The size of the settlements is a mystery - as are many things in this large country.”


Project: Cornelia Bräuer

Cornelia Bräuer, Elke Schmedler, Marcus Brückner

Design supervision
Roland Gnaiger

Bureau Salésien des Projets Lubumbashi, Caritas Austria Auslandshilfe, CRAterre UNESCO chair earthen architecture