April 2018 Networking Meeting – Why did Breathe Fail?

Come and hear Lin Roberts discuss her recent paper:

The Breathe Urban Village Competition:
Why did it fail to deliver?

Monday 23 April 5.30 for 6pm
at Pegasus Arms 14 Oxford Terrace

Read the paper here

Lin is SENIOR LECTURER in the Faculty of Environment, Society and Design
Department of Environmental Management at Lincoln.

She has also been a key member of The Viva Project from it’s inception.

Lin Roberts

Community Participation in City-Making – free public lecture

A free public lecture with Joan Raun Nielsen & Sofie Willems of Spektrum Architects (Denmark)

6.00 – 7.30 pm Monday 16 April
DL – D Block Lecture Theatre, Ara Institute of Canterbury, 60 Madras St

There is a lot of interest in Christchurch in how communities can be more and better involved in helping revive and remake public spaces, buildings and parks. So how can we facilitate community participation in public space and architecture projects?

In this free and public lecture, Joan Raun Nielsen and Sofie Willems, award-winning architects from Spektrum Architects (Denmark), present their approach to co-creation and participatory practice, and share some of their superb projects with us.

They have worked with a broad range of people, including communities with very limited budgets, and have achieved stunning results through the use of community consultation. Regardless of land ownership or who the client is – be it public, community or private or a mixture – their practice is applicable to a wide range of situations and to a variety of people

Joan Raun Nielsen and Sofie Willems – Spektrum Architects

Spektrum Architects works with building architecture, landscape, urban planning and public participation in the pursuit of design that takes into consideration a specific site’s qualities and social dynamics. Working within the disciplines of architecture, landscape architecture and urban planning, the office insists on an architectural approach where the inside and outside environments are inextricably linked.

Joan Raun Nielsen and Sofie Willems were awarded with the prestigious Nykredit Sustainability Prize 2016 for ‘placing sustainability centrally in their architecture through inclusion, social awareness and commitment’. The work of Spektrum Architects is a testament to how architects with few resources and dedication can create projects with deep roots. Their work stands out with processes of strong social anchoring, where climate, landscape and people are engaged in an active learning process for the whole community. Spektrum Architect’s site-specific work manages to combine resource-conscious and social responsibility with local responsibility, architectural poetry and sensibility.’

This lecture is presented by Te Pūtahi – Christchurch centre for architecture and city-making. It has been made possible with the support of Boffa Miskell, the Canterbury branch of the NZIA, Firth and Mark Herring Lighting. We also wish to acknowledge our accommodation partner, BreakFree on Cashel and to thank Ara for the venue.

Nielsen and Willems will also be speaking at the 2018 NZILA Firth Conference taking place in Auckland.

The Breathe Urban Village Competition: Why did it fail to deliver?

Lin Roberts has been a key part of The Viva Project since it began, and teaches at Department of Environmental Management, Lincoln University, New Zealand.

 

Lin has has just completed a paper (published in the Lincoln Planning Review) about why The Breathe Urban Village Competition failed as a key anchor project.

Abstract:

Successful urban regeneration projects generate benefits that are realised over a much longer timeframe than normal market developments and benefits well beyond those that can be uplifted by a market developer.

Consequently there is substantial evidence in the literature that successful place-making and urban regeneration projects are usually public-private partnerships and involve a funder, usually local or central government, willing to contribute ‘patient’ capital. Following the 2010 and 2011 earthquakes that devastated the centre of Christchurch, there was an urgent need to rebuild and revitalise the heart of the city, and increasing the number of people living in or near the city centre was seen as a key ingredient of that. In October 2010, an international competition was launched to design and build an Urban Village, a project intended to stimulate renewed residential development in the city. The competition attracted 58 entrants from around world, and in October 2013 the winning team was chosen from four finalists.

However the team failed to secure sufficient finance, and in November 2015 the Government announced that the development would not proceed. The Government was unwilling or unable to recognise that an insistence on a pure market approach would not deliver the innovative sustainable village asked for in the competition brief, and failed to factor in the opportunity cost to government, local government, local businesses and the wider Christchurch community of delaying by many years the residential development of the eastern side of the city. As a result, the  early vision of the vitality that a thriving residential neighbourhood would bring to the city has not yet been realised.

Read the full article here

 

Floating Houses an Option in the Red Zone

Kristina Hill – Floating options: Creative adaptation in cities

Thursday 20 July 2017, 6:00 – 7.30pm
The Piano, 156 Armagh Street

Doors, bar and coat check open from 5:00pm

Kristina Hill is Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture, Environmental Planning and Urban Design at Berkeley.

Her current research focus is urban resilience in the changing global environment, particularly around climate change, sea level rise, and development to enhance a city’s ability to recover from disaster events.

Hill will discuss her recent work in the San Francisco Bay Area – a region that, like Christchurch, is challenged by a rising water table in a seismic zone.

She’ll share strategies for addressing these issues and describe recent engineering experiments used in geologic hazard areas in California.

How could Christchurch adapt to the challenges and opportunities presented by climate change? What new designs and responses might work for the red zone?

Watch a 25 minute YouTube video to learn more about Hill’s research.
Hybrid Edges: A Typology of Coastal Adaptation Strategies, June 2014(External link)

 

https://engage.regeneratechristchurch.nz/christchurch-conversations

Read more here

Alternative housing delivery: Baugruppen

What is Baugruppen?

Permeable solitary blocks through to the River Spree create public access at Spreefeld. Andrea Kroth, Author provided

The Baugruppen model represents an innovative strategy for constructing new housing. Known in North America as co-housing, Baugruppen or joint-venture buildings in Germany, and l’habitat participatif or participatory housing in France, are resident-led housing design and development.

Baugruppen is an approach to developing housing where private owners collaboratively build affordable multifamily projects. It’s not quite the same as co-housing – some include common spaces and facilities (e.g. gardens, community rooms, roof terraces) but these are not necessarily incorporated. However, like co-housing, baugruppen incorporate a participatory planning process.

Multiple families get together and agree the design that suits everyone – these are usually multi-storey, multi-unit buildings (think apartments) rather than detached or semidetached housing. An alternative form is Baugemeinschaft, a form of cohousing led by an independent consultants-developer, often with an architectural background, have emerged as viable options as more Germans look to become homeowners.

How do baugruppen deliver affordability?

Apartment layouts at Ritter Strasse 50, initiated by ifau and Jesko Fezer with Heide and Von Beckerath, are highly individualised. Andrea Kroth, Author provided

Baugruppen are an affordable approach to housing because they are generally funded without developers (self-financed). Local professionals tell me that groups of individuals working collaboratively and without the developer can save 15 – 20% of housing costs (basically removing the development margin from the construction costs). Leaving owners to complete fitout themselves provides additional cost saving opportunities.

In Wilhelmsburg (Hamburg), we came across two quite different examples of baugruppen.

  1. The first was a mixed development, in partnership with a developer, where the front portion of the development was sold off to private owners and the rear portion owned by partners in the baugruppen.
  2. The second baugruppen development was quite different. Named Smart Price Houses, they were designed as a do-it-yourself development. The basic skeleton structure, staircase access and basic building connections were constructed for the co -owners. The design idea is Le Corbusier’s Dominio House. Individual owners then designed and completed the interior fit-out of their own units.
  3. In Berlin I went to a third baugruppen in Ritterstrasse where 19 households came together to design / build this attractive development. They reputedly saved 20% of construction cost by adopting industrial construction methods (for example, electrical conduit runs surface on walls) and selfmanaging the contract to avoid developer margin.

How Cities are supporting Baugruppen

At Urban Living 01, Abcarius and Burns Architecture Design created an operable facade to get around a ban of balconies. Andrea Kroth, Author provided

City support for baugruppen I met with Stattbau, a multi-disciplinary design practice which has a contract with the City of Berlin to provide facilitation services for those groups interested in participating in baugruppen developments. Similar services are offered in Munich and Hamburg.

This is an innovative and successful way to support groups who want to design and develop their own communities. With a lawyer and business manager on their team, Stattbau lead a robust process which supports groups through the orientation phase, the planning phase, the purchase of land / construction process and the occupation / residence and ongoing maintenance.

Over 8 years, Stattbau has facilitated 160 groups to build baugruppen. It’s fair to say that city governments in Germany have shaped and promoted this practice with policies that support self-organised, collaborative building. Take Tuebingen, for example. By the mid-90s, Tuebingen was beyond affordable for many residents.

The City purchased brownfields vacated by NATO in the southern part of town, and Alternative housing delivery: Baugruppen Page 3 held competitions to sell individual lots to baugruppen with the best concept. Baugruppen were required to allocate the ground floor for non-residential use, and set development to the block periphery with large areas set aside for semi-private courtyards.

Tuebingen’s approach resulted in costs 10-20% lower over typical developer models, with higher levels of diversity and ownership amongst younger families. The City of Hamburg undertakes to encourage and facilitate the development of baugruppen with a special department which has overseen and coordinated the building of 1800 developments over the last decade. Hamburg sets aside nearly 20% of suitable land specifically for baugruppen, and if there is competition for a lot between interested groups, the City looks at various criteria, including viability, concept originality, owner diversity, etc.

This pushes baugruppen in the planning stage to be very innovative –such as predominantly immigrants, or single parent households only. In Freiburg, the city council made a conscience decision that developmental rights in Vauban would be preferentially given to baugruppen over developers. The city and working group felt that prioritizing affordability (through collaboratively-built projects), would make it attractive and feasible financially for families to live there rather than suburbs.

Rather than bidding wars, lots were awarded to parties meeting criteria such as most diverse scheme, most ecologically sound, etc. Freiburg’s city council even provided facilitators to help a baugruppe procure legal and financial representation for their project. In terms of population density–at 5,300 inhabitants over 38 ha –Vauban is denser than over 95% of Seattle, yet it maintains a distinct character and ample open space. Baugruppen would certainly require New Zealanders to adopt a different approach but with the burgeoning interesting in community-led development, the time might be right. With suitable support to ensure success, clearly there are savings to be made. And with participation in design, future owners can choose what they want and how they want to live in a medium density setting.

The original story published here