10 August 2012
by Dorota Drajewicz
Running Ahead - Vitalising Urban Areas and Communities is the Kenyan exhibition for the International Architecture and Design Showcase. Launched at Kenya House it showcases Kenya’s achievements in various fields and gives an idea of the changes happening in cities across the country.
The exhibition was organised by Architectural Association of Kenya in collaboration with Kenyan Universities and features the work of a number of architecture practices.
Project images are presented together with brief narratives that introduce the approaches by Kenyan architects and university students to vitalise urban areas and urban living. Initiatives that are being undertaken in order to improve the structure of cities and solve environmental issues are crucial to the country’s future, in context of liberalised political and social settings, in order to encourage tourism and investment opportunities.
The proposals included the Jomo Kenyatta University student’s idea of 'Revitalising Nairobi', a plan that encourages urban sustainability by promoting energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy, while 'Shell of Steel' by Planning System Services Ltd with GMW Architects & Arup, demonstrated a model for affordable housing that featured a simple, low-cost steel structure that is quick to construct.
Students from the Department of Architecture & Building Science from University of Nairobi together with Tecta Consultants presented 'Railway Relocation Plan', a design for a series of walls, footpaths, over and underpasses to attract people away from the railway and ensure a secure environment for pedestrians.
‘The Community Cooker’ shared suggestions from the community to come up with ideas for using industrial waste in order to produce energy.
The project recounts a story of the major infrastructural expansion and how it has been undertaken by urban environment planners so far.
To learn more about the Showcase download our guide here.