Season 2013 Episode 06.17.13

Alejandro Aravena: "Uncommon Sense and the Economy of Sustainable Construction"

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In his keynote speech at the 4th Holcim Forum 2013 in Mumbai, Chilean architect Alejandro Aravena reported on the extensive rebuilding of the port city of Constitucíon in Chile, which was destroyed by a tsunami in 2010 -- and explained a number of "uncommon sense" observations from his experience. Construction projects in such a context must meet stringent fiscal limits; otherwise they would not be accepted under emergency budget provisions. At the same time, architects must respect the tenet that "houses should be the opposite of cars: they should gain value over time. In social housing, that was not the case." Yet the greatest challenge to achieving high-quality reconstruction is not cost, but rather the multiplicity of players requiring extensive coordination: "the scarcest resource is synthesis in complex situations like a city."moreless

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