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COVID 19 – Towards a NEW NORMAL in SINGAPORE public housing?
HDB (Housing Development Board) residential flats have been the main stay of Singapore’s public housing program since 1960s. More than 78 percent of Singapore’s locals and residents reside in these buildings.
The genesis of our project is based on the worldwide pandemic COVID 19 that has swept across the world in 2020. Many countries have had to quarantine entire cities and populations to reduce human contact and viral spreads. We ask the possibility that this virus or future viruses will have longer lasting impacts onto our built environments and the way we work. Imagine if the new normal was to have to work from home for longer durations of up to a year? What if human mobility had to be further restricted to combat the spread of viruses? What if the steady supply of food to our supermarkets is hampered? What if we would need to get use to a new way of living – one that is more protected and self-sustaining?
These old public housing projects are where the majority of Singaporeans live in, our project explores how to quickly and efficiently transform these old public housing blocks towards a well balanced model of sustainability, internalized communal sharing and contactless interaction with the outside world.
Across the façade that has the common corridors to allow individual residents to access their apartment units, we have inserted numerous structural add-ons that allow for the practice of urban farming. This allows for the residents to supplant their weekly dietary needs with home grown produce thus reducing the reliance on external / imported vegetables and food staples. Aside from this, it allows for bonding within the internal community so that families can live in better harmony via sharing and reliance on one another.
Rainwater storage for the urban farming needs and solar panels further improve the sustainability features of these upgraded public housing blocks.
At the ground floor, we have created numerous spaces for secure co-working spaces, communal kitchen and contactless delivery reception via appropriately distanced windows and a reimagined postal box system are all the amenities catered for a community that needs to weather the challenges of a long term worldwide fight against a viral pandemic.
Lastly, an additional roof garden at level 1 functions as a garden, play area and provides more space for urban farming. Landing pads for Aerial drone deliveries are installed to allow for unmanned aerial deliveries.
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