tutor | patrick abou khalil


The destruction of the Port of Beirut, has posed a greater re-building challenge to a nation that was already facing a major economic collapse. Beirut officials have estimated that at least 25,000 homes are uninhabitable and around 15,000 tons of wheat that had been stored at the iconic silos of the port, are now in a state of utter ruin. This presents with an opportunity to critically question the developmental models and ideologies behind Beirut’s planning. There is a greater need to re-house displaced people and to cater to the urgent problems of food security, storage and production, thus decreasing the country’s over-reliance on imports. 

The project aims for an affordable emergent housing within a new developmental model for the reconstruction of Beirut. A new groundwork must be laid to re-imagine ways of living to respond to the challenging needs of Beirut. Some of the key challenges that lie ahead include, affordable resilient housing, rebuilding and planning for storage facilities that provide the strategic reserve of grains, production of food across different scales ranging from rooftop gardening to shared community lots for growing food, to urban farms.

The studio proposes to expand the knowledge of housing systems in Beirut and aims to respond via a lens of self-reliance through inclusion of programs and typologies that have failed to exist collectively before. This development of adaptable typologies that focus on the constantly evolving way of living will address issues of flexibility of domestic space and productive space through varied systems. By working closely with a network of local actors, the studio aims to develop viable prototypes and real-case scenarios.

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