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Aalto University 1st year master project 2018


The housing idea is to develop community based living system with the organic urban farming operation and make most value of common space for community resource and economic development opportunities. 

Starting point 

The affordabe housing project is located in Zanzibar city, in Ng’ambo neighbourhood. The neighbourhood needs to be more densified according to population growth in urban areas. Ng’ambo’s current situation is that most of the buildings are one story high in a really organic pattern - they give human scale atmosphere with spaces between buildings. In the future, the area is going to be a three to five stories high area. New plots for development are defined by existing building groups which also define street hierarchy and accordingly building heights. 


I’m working with a group of 9 houses and the idea is to develop community based living system with an organic urban farming operation which provides food and opportunity to sell crops. Furthermore, urban gardening would improve the city’s ecosystem and health and also helps to live in harmony with the environment.


During the field trip to Zanzibar we had the opportunity to discover the local people’s living habits and take it to account in our design process. For example, according to the climate - most of the activities take place outside. Basically, the project’s design is focused on three different spaces - public, semi-public and private space. The aim is to extend home boundaries to outdoor - the people’s daily household activities continue also outside of the of physical wall. My intention is to create a smooth transition between those three different spaces. Public space includes street activities like commercial, cafes, restaurants and entrances to apartments. Courtyard urban gardening, cooking, community spaces are located in semi-public spaces. And the private spaces are living spaces for inhabitants. 

supervisors  Saija Hollmen / Taru Niskanen /

                   Helena Sandman


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