1st prize winner

„Enhancing Food Production in Marakkech”

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United Arab Emirates

American University of Sharjah
College of Architecture Art and Design

winning project

Ondřej Valach Lumion

Project idea

This project aims to reinterpret ‘Food Waste’ and uncover the potential of discarded organic material by: re purposing it for consumption, redefining it for material construction, and encouraging a sustainable lifestyle within Marrakesh, Morocco.

Project description

An alarming amount of pre-consumption waste is generated and placed in North African landfills, which mostly comprises fruits and vegetables due to inefficient farming methods, storage etc. Hence, the project aspires to collect such waste from neighboring farms and markets and then re-purpose the produce in our site that includes a processing facility, a market, and food hall. Overall, the project helps to improve sustainability literacy within the community by immersing the visitor in the process of re purposing waste through guided tours and activities. It also helps to support local vendors by allowing them to rent stalls within the food halls and celebrate the cuisine and produce of the country.

Technical information

The wadi (river channel) bisecting the site is usually dry throughout the year. As a result, seasonal activities such as grape stomping, zest drying etc. can occur in the ridge of the wadi to maximize its potential. Additionally, water is also a scarce resource in Marrakesh ;therefore efficient irrigation (drip system) and water harvesting methods were employed through the formation of ridges and mounds on the ground on a macro scale; as micro-catchments to facilitate the growth of the crops. The usage of water channels on the roof and flood water from the wadi is also stored in an underground cistern. In terms of construction, the usage of organic waste as bio-char can be used to reduce 50% of cement being utilized to create a Char-Crete shell structure. The walls are made of rammed earth and appear as though it is emerging from the ground. There are a variety of spaces created by means of these Char-Crete shells. The processing facilities that need to be temperature regulated and cooler, are submerged within the earth and hermetically sealed. Meanwhile, shells above public spaces like the market and food hall act as canopies.

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