The project is located in a remote village of Mikocheni within the Kilimanjaro region, in Tanzania. The building in question is a residential house for Mzee Wilson (72), a man well known in the community since he used to be the village leader. Until now, village meetings are held within his premises and property. He used to run a popular restaurant with his wife on the same plot of land, but since she died he has not been able to continue the business. The opportunities are there, but multiple challenges made it too difficult to overcome the difficulties for him. His house and other infrastructures are in poor condition, yet his mentality is still strong. C-re-aid believes that Wilson will be a great ambassador to the community to display creative building techniques to overcome the environmental challenges of the area. A stronger house and possible a renovation of the business infrastructure would make this place ideal to share the construction possibilities with the community.
The design of the house was created in close cooperation with the babu of the house, the village leaders and the students of C-re-aid. The babu made it very clear that it was important for him to have a living room, a bedroom and a guestroom in case any of his children would like to visit. He preferred to have smaller rooms yet those three rooms were crucial. The students Edgar and Pieter designed a house that met his needs, and managed to stay within the limited budget.
The choice of material, rammed earth, was made because of the environmental challenges in this area. Rammed earth provides thick walls that protect inhabitants from the heat and strong winds in the area. Furthermore, the rammed earth will not suffer from the aggressive, salty soil. Due to time limitations, the house was build half out of rammed earth with a lime plaster, and the other half out of a more traditional stone masonry.
The building was completed with a budget of 2100 Euros, including logistics, labor and materials. It was built in 30 work days by a group of 6 people, of which one was a construction supervisor, three were craftsmen and two were student architects.
The project was realized by Pieter Dockx and Edgar Ivan Bakimyuse, under the Groundwork project branch of C-re-aid. They spearheaded the entire construction from designing to building completion, with the help Marie Heyvaerts - member of C-re-a.i.d; providing all professional assistance needed.
The aim of this project is to enthuse input from both students of architecture and related faculties. Students can dedicate their summer to being trained as architects and help to build communities and related faculties can create programs of international cooperation. This allows students to develop their skills.
Through C-re-aid in Tanzania you can participate in a project of your own in the company of a student from the Faculty of Architecture in Dar Es Salaam.