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warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water, the non-profit organization led by italian architect arturo vittori, has shared images of an integrated village currently taking shape in cameroon. the project, which is expected to complete in 2022, is already operative with around 30 people, including both workers and pygmy peoples — hunter-gatherers of the tropical rainforest — living on site.

 

called the ‘warka village’, the ambitious development builds on arturo vittori’s previous work in the area, which saw him awarded THE DESIGN PRIZE 2019 in the category of ‘SOCIAL IMPACT’.

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest
all images courtesy of warka water

 

 

‘this is a project for an integrated village constructed only by using local and natural materials and ancient local construction techniques,’ arturo vittori tells designboom.we are using earth, water, stone, wood and natural fibers. the ‘warka village’ aspires to transform the landscape of comprehensive human development, utilizing low-cost, sustainable, community-driven, high-impact multi-sector development interventions that are tailored to the village’s specific needs.’

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

 

 

the project, which has been under construction in the congo basin for 18 months — the largest tropical rainforest in the world — will eventually form a community for local artisans, serving as an example of how to live with nature. the village comprises seven ‘warka houses’ inspired by the region’s vernacular dwellings; two ‘warka towers’ designed to collect and harvest potable water from the air; ‘warka santiation’ composting toilets that operate without flushing water; a ‘warka pavilion’; and a modular edible ‘warka garden’ that provides food for residents.

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

 

 

made from bamboo and other natural materials, the seven ‘warka houses’ reference ancient local traditions, while offering a higher standard of hygiene and comfort for the villagers of such rural communities. meanwhile, the two ‘warka towers’ will provide the community with an alternative water source. the towers’ water-harvesting capacity depends on the meteorological conditions and aims to distribute between 40 to 80 liters (10 to 20 gallons) of drinking water every day. 

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

 

 

‘warka tower is demonstrating that we can harvest water from the sky, so water doesn’t only come from the ground,’ arturo vittori told designboom in a recent interview. ‘this not a new invention but an ancient knowhow that we have lost. looking back, several cultures have been adopting different strategies to collect water in a sustainable way from the air. warka will also help to rediscover some of these lost traditions, inspiring a new generation of architects to incorporate these techniques in contemporary design.’ read the interview in full here.

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

 

 

as issues of sanitation and hygiene still remain one of the main concerns for developing countries, ‘warka sanitation’ provides composting toilets, which operate without flushing water and energy. furthermore, the resultant composting materials can be used as fertilizer for the ‘warka garden’.

 

the term ‘warka’ is derived from the warka tree, a giant, wild fig tree native to ethiopia. like the tree, the ‘warka tower’ — the team’s first project — serves as important cornerstone for the community, and the future ‘warka village’ to come.

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka-village-cameroon-arturo-vittori-designboom-XL

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

 

 

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

warka water is building an integrated, community-driven village in the cameroon rainforest

 

 

 

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