Design for the Other 90%

Design for the Other 90%

Smithsonian's Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum - Design for the Other 90%

Smithsonian - Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum


Increasingly, local and regional authorities cannot keep up with the unprecedented growth of informal settlements or slums. This section of the exhibition showcases innovative solutions that have emerged as the informal and formal cities exchange design knowledge to meet this demand. Among the projects on view are community-generated solutions by Shack/Slum Dwellers International that build the capacity of poor urban communities by addressing secure land tenure, housing, basic amenities and livelihood through community-to-community exchanges throughout Africa, Asia and Latin America; the Urbanism Manual for Precarious Settlements, designed and produced for use in Buenos Aires, Argentina, which provides a free "how-to" urban design manual for newly arriving settlers; and the Incremental Housing project in Iquique, Chile, and Monterrey, Mexico, which produces half-finished houses that are completed by the residents and contain only the essentials of a built home—bathroom, kitchen, structure and roof—in order to stretch resources further to meet the rapidly growing demand for housing. Other projects in this section explore building methods, materials and manufacturing, including a full-scale shelter installation representing an alternative gabions construction method used in Mexico City, in which mesh and wire containers are filled on-site with locally available materials. This low-cost, flexible system can easily adapt to accommodate a range of needs. Also on view will be a plastic formwork kit to produce cast-in-place mortar structures using mostly indigenous materials, in order to quickly, efficiently and cost-effectively produce homes (moladi).

Keywords - moladi, plastic formwork, Design for the Other 90%, Smithsonian, Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, United Nations, homes, mortar structure, indigenous materials

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