Nasma One Classroom School
Burj Kalaway, Lebanon, 2014
With the local community unsatisfied with presently ineffective makeshift emergency shelters, it was our intention to explore and highlight the benefits of using low-cost, locally sourced materials and innovative structural systems to create a climate responsive and environmentally conscious project. Burj Kalaway is a small village typical of south Lebanon where families fleeing war torn Syria have since found refuge while working in the agricultural sector characteristic of these rural communities. A pressing issue in such areas is the lack of access to education as there are no humanitarian agents active in these sparsely populated areas.
With the firm belief that spatial qualities inform our experience and the quality of our lives, the team was committed to responding to these pressing issues by developing a multi-purpose communal space that could double as a classroom. In collaboration with the German based firm Climate Engineering Transsolar, we were able to set an example for cost-efficient, climatically responsible and sustainable design. With the vision of creating a prototype capable of bringing design innovation to the most vulnerable communities while engaging locals in the process, the team was able to instill within the community a strong sense of ownership for the project.