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July 2019
Design proposal
House refurbishment and extension/ Garden design/ Summer pavilion
Galați, Romania

More info coming soon.

house with three gardens

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July 2019
Design proposal
Wooden house
Cologne, Germany

More info coming soon.

suburban house

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June 2019
Design proposal
Church rehabilitation
Romanesti, Romania

More info coming soon.

two churches / one space

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February 2019
Competition
British council book stand
Bucharest, Romania

shared_GROUND is the choice to build the stand around a generous area of unoccupied space.
By making it the central focus of the intervention, space becomes a resource and a moment of
opportunity.
Defining free space is a cultural, social and political act thatestablishes space and architecture as
a collective discourse. It is a moment of responsibility, generosity and humanity that identifies
our shared values: inclusion, accessibility, belonging, social equity, debate.
The performative surface offers space for both event activities – debates, presentations, children
workshops and everyday use – hanging-out, reading, playing. It allows for a repertoire of
practices where space is negotiated through particular and temporary needs. Spatial production
becomes an ongoing act. The dark surface of the stand becomes an object of collective creativity
as a background for chalk drawing and writing. The possibility of direct interaction is one means
of engagement and individual expression, empowering people with freedom of choice and
autonomy. The play area is another space for interaction where the position of individual sitting
units can define various scenarios of use and spatial configuration. Allowing and planning for
variation creates space for tracing collective imagination and reflects patterns of social life.
The expression of the border is defined both through permeability and openness and as a space of
specific programme and function that aids the activities of the unoccupied space. The border is
the space that mediates the shared_GROUND with the context of the book fair and it creates the
first possibilities of engagement with the space.
The perimetral timber frame structure leaves two sides open to create a continuous platform
where one can sit, wait and relax in the middle of the active atmosphere of the fair. The other
two sides offer a set of defined spaces such as the exhibition area, the book selling space, the info
point, some storage units and a separate access for people with limited mobility and wheelchair
users.The use of light helps further define and accentuate the children illustration exhibition and
the book selling area.
The project is based on the conviction that space goes beyond design becoming built and lived. It
is performative and therefore representative through its occupation and expression. Architecture
constructs the GROUND and lives it built but unfinished, as a suggestion that remains to be
continued by the experience of movement and use. Construction is not the final act, as space is
continuously defined and re-defined through use. To achieve this freedom the unoccupied space
transcends a clearly defined programme to allow for diversity and flexibility. When space is a
resource, the void is the place of possibility, chance and adaptation. Liberated space is a cultural
expression of living closer together.

shared ground

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October 2018
Ongoing
House
Bucharest, Romania

a house within a garden

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June 2018
Ongoing
House extension
Bucharest, Romania

extension of an old house

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June 2018
Ongoing
Collective household
Fagaras, Brasov County, Romania

The project starts with a house and a barn on a long plot, where the owner together with a series of NGOs developed a plan to revitalize and open the household. This open scenario of use started in an informal manner through the hospitality of the owner, but needed a project that would express the new ambitions and necessities of the house, while upgrading living conditions and reclaiming spaces for collective use.

The barn becomes the main collective space that can be used for coworking, events and gatherings. For introducing the space to neighbours and other local groups a modular wooden stage was produced during a building workshop that supported the first series of activities in the summer of 2017.

The spaces of the house are transformed for communal living scenarios, adapting the existing structure for new instances of use and distinct spatial experiences.

collective household

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August 2018
Homeless equipment
Finished
Pantelimon, Bucharest, Romania

substandardPLUS

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October 2018
Study
Bucharest, Romania

pitched roof house study

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August 2018
House study
Bucharest, Romania

brickhouse

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February 2018
Study house
Bucharest, Romania

elevated house

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    @Lavinia Pollak, courtesy of MNAC Bucharest
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    @Lavinia Pollak, courtesy of MNAC Bucharest
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    @Lavinia Pollak, courtesy of MNAC Bucharest
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    @Lavinia Pollak, courtesy of MNAC Bucharest
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    @Lavinia Pollak, courtesy of MNAC Bucharest
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    @Lavinia Pollak, courtesy of MNAC Bucharest
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    @Lavinia Pollak, courtesy of MNAC Bucharest
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    @Lavinia Pollak, courtesy of MNAC Bucharest
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    @Lavinia Pollak, courtesy of MNAC Bucharest
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    @Lavinia Pollak, courtesy of MNAC Bucharest
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    @Lavinia Pollak, courtesy of MNAC Bucharest
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April-October 2018
CLOSED DOORS, OPEN ENVELOPES. IOSIF KIRÁLY – EARLY WORKS, 1975 – 2000

Artist: Iosif Király
Curator: Ruxandra Demetrescu
MNAC Coordinator: Alexandru Oberländer-Târnoveanu
Exhibition design: atelier ad hoc
MNAC, Bucharest

the archive

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April 2018
House proposal - competition
The outskirts of Bucharest

Our intention was to occupy as little land as possible on the ground floor and develop an elevated house to make room for a lavish garden with tall trees spreading to the neighbors. The perimeter metal structure supports the house without occupying the yard but outlines multiple sheltered places - covered terraces, an inner courtyard, paved areas. Here you can spend time alone or with friends – on the swing, hammock or canopy - you can work isolated from others or have family dining together. The kitchen becomes a garden room, used both for cooking and as a welcoming place for garden parties.

The inner courtyard, hidden at the beginning, is discovered after you walk through the house and take the staircase. Upstairs the space opens outwards and you can heve a new perception of the garden from the height of the tree crowns. The floor space is sinuous and developpes around the inner courtyard, describing a series of common places - a living room, a play area, a fireplace, a dining space - that are oriented both towards each other and towards the outside.

pilotis house

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February 2017
Ongoing
House extension
Braila, Romania

60m2 house

gallery house

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December 2017
Help equipment
Bucharest

Due to the limited number of shelters and the poor quality of social services a lot of Bucharet’s homeless prefer sleeping on the street to other forms of shelter offered by local government.

The living unit addresses the situation of rough sleeping using easily replicable structures that can be put together in one hour by people without construction experience. The materials – euro pallets, wood slats and raffia bags – can be easily procured in case of emergency and used for construction.

The shelter is waterproof and can be attached to alternative sources of heating available on the street –hot water chanels or air conditioning units. It can be placed in various spaces in the city, defining a more intimate and protected space for sleeping outdoor. The easy assembly and replication make it appropriate for situations of emergency such as evictions, natural disasters and emergency refuge.

The temporay shelter was developed in partnership with Carusel Association that deals with the improvement of life quality for people that come from disadvantaged socioeconomic backgrounds that risc disease, discrimination and social exclusion - such as sex workers, homeless, drug addicts.

raffia shelter

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    mnac warehouse
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    agora
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    @MNAC
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    @MNAC
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    the platform @MNAC
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    public talks @ MNAC
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    workshop @ MNAC
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    registration @ Clara Duran, MNAC
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    artwork display @ Clara Duran, MNAC
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    registration @ MNAC
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    conservation @ MNAC
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November 2016 – October 2018
Exhibition design
National Museum of Contemporary Art, Bucharest

During the operation of reorganizing its storage spaces, the museum reassembles its collection at the ground floor exhibition spaces inside the former 'Palace of Ceausescu'. Its eclectic collection that runs through the artistic production during dictatorship towards present times, is regarded as a 'random database of artifacts' that finds its place in the two exhibition rooms.

The first room makes up for the lack of a proper museum foyer through the construction of a amphitheatre used as an agora for main debate and exhibition space while the second room, known as the marble room, is a cluttered depository and a open working platform containing artworks of various sizes and types.

Keeping the memory of this particular moment in the history of the museum as found in the warehouse, the display of artworks maintains a sense of non-hierarchical variety. A modular timber frame storage system is constructed and replicated to create the support-structures needed for the marshalling yard. The wooden framework is designed to fit pallets and defines a series of spaces where art pieces are displayed, being protected with white mesh while having an open viewing front. White neon lights accentuate various spots while having a general presence in the exhibition spaces. Timber leftovers are also used for canvas display on perimetral walls, while the use of hemp rope creates further divisions of the wood units for exhibiting a large number of paintings. The spatial setting remains open to changes and to a general circulation of artworks between the warehouses and the exhibition spaces during a one year process.

The layout mediates the multiple instances of the marshalling yard: a workplace - for the maintenance and registration done by museum staff, a gathering space - used for public events and workshops, an exhibition space - for general museum visitors and a depository - providing a frame for displaying the accumulation of artifacts gathered by various state institutions.

Due to the large number of artworks in the museum warehouse and the small available budget, the exhibition spaces are used at maximum capacity and the suport-structures, the pallets, the leftovers and the net will be reused for storage after the marshalling yard is over.

marshalling yard exhibition

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June 2016
Refugee equiqment
Eme3 International Architecture Festival, Barcelona

Following the large displacements in the Middle East, North Africa and Europe, the act of setteling and resetteling somewhere becomes a social mobilization apparatus fueled by solidarity and a shared conciousness regarding a past belonging. The camps are places where ‘en route’ communities of vulnerable residents find shelter and an infrastrusture that makes daily life possible.

The Individual Exile Unit responds to the living situations of the present camps, both as a places for temporary settlement, and as prolonged living assemblies for indeterminate periods of time. Shelter in such context is both an every day living space for an individual or a family and a political issue regarding international and state policies and civil society.

The Individual Exile Unit provides space for the basic needs of an individual or a couple within a volume of 24 cubic meters. Built with steel frames and modular wood panels, it allows for easy transportation and assemblage. Its configuration allows for multiple use scenarios:to rest, to wash, to store, to eat - with minimum resources and great flexibility.

refugee shelter

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June 2016
Installation / Street Delivery Festival
Arthur Verona Street, Bucharest

During the three days festival, the Arthur Verona Street is closed for cars and open for people, activities and events. After recent spatial improvements, the small square along the street is still generally used as parking space by its close neighbours or intrusively occupied by restaurants.

Using the same logic, we occupied the square with a scaffolding structure and temporary reclaimed it for collective use. The spatial frame covered with roughly cut yellow cloth attempted to fill this otherwise contested public space. Wooden platforms are placed at different heights, changing the walking level of the square and forming new places in between.

The temporary structure gathers alternative activities using various objects made or found at the festival. Two high points are made available and offer panoramic views of the street.

street delivery

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December 2015 - ongoing
Substandard living equipment
Bucharest

The equipment inserts itself in a situation of precarious living, responding to basic needs - warmth, hygiene, food, water and space for personal belongings. Instances of prolonged living crysis remain mostly undocumented and unaccounted for by local administration and are rarely addressed by social and political policies. Such spaces of continuous survival endure a situation that seems unredeemable while decline remains hidden and ignored.

The addition relates itself to a given context, offering a primary aid while maintaining the daily routines and the network of help and conviviality necessary for survival in such uncertain circumstances.

Meant for a homeless couple that has been living for the past 5 years in a niche besides the dumpster of a housing block, the yellow metallic structure acts as shower, stove, cooking and eating table, storage unit and clothes dryer. Once given, the kitchenette was used for a few days and exchanged for 18 euro to a small shelter nearby, where it is used by six other homeless people. The new owners made radical adjustments to fit the structure in its new location. Heating and cooking remained its primary uses.

the flying kitchenette

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    at the National Library @ The Most Beautiful Books of Romania
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    at the National Library @ The Most Beautiful Books of Romania
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    at the National Library @ The Most Beautiful Books of Romania
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    at the National Library
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    at the National Library @ The Most Beautiful Books of Romania
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    in the hall of the French Institute @ Cristian Nistor
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    in the hall of the French Institute @ Cristian Nistor
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    storage in University Square

November 2015 - ongoing
Formal – Informal exhibition design
National Library / University Square, Bucharest

ATELIER AD HOC were appointed to design the Most Beautiful Books in Romania exhibition. A set of furniture for temporary book display was needed for this annual book design event. Cardboard was chosen as appropriate construction material for its tactile relationship with books, but also with regard to the limited budget and short time frame for design and production.

The necessity for easy transportation and assemblage was addressed through the construction of a series of packs containing three types of modular pieces - a table, a stool and a panel - that compose through repetition a proper space of contact between viewers and books. Folding is used as basic method for changing each element's configuration from packed to being used.

Following the instances of book display in the city, once obsolete as exhibition furnishings, the cardboard pieces are taken out in the street, making the transition from design showcase to informal second hand book sales by redistributing part of the exhibition resources to support the practices of the local antiquarians near University Square.

Even if the informal book sellers have had a long history in this central square, the places where they are allowed to continue their activity are periodically changed when they begin to proliferate. They survive by finding unclaimed spaces around the square where they continue to be tolerated. Presently they remain scattered in the area, ready to pack and run when police is coming.

Curator: Anca Verona Mihuleț

formal - informal exhibition design

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October 2015 - ongoing
Exchange equipment
Bucharest

Placed at the crossroads of trash collectors routes, the equipment relies on relations of exchange and solidarity in its area of proximity. Its presence reveals a marginal economy of survival where deals remain unregulated and informal, prone to both abuse and proliferation. As a representation of peripheral activities that occur in the city, it finds a middle ground between conflict and cooperation by inserting itself in a preexisting logic of interaction and local organization of human coexistence in present Bucharest.

Starting from a previous study of trash collectors in the city, the prototype gathers resources that are out of use in neighborhood households but still hold material value through reuse and recycling, further distributing them to other people in need along the collectors routes. Exchange is unmediated. Either bringing or taking is based on individual option. Although starting as a response to the growing informal economy of waste in the city - based on collection of plastic bottels, metallic cans and paper - its current uses are more diverse and relate to practices of charity - food, clothing, footwear - which directly address poverty at a local scale.

The yellow metallic structure uses plastic crates and hangers for gathering unused material, has a bench and a table for resting, a clock for checking when collectors arrive each day and a weighting machine for verifying the accumulated quantity before going to a trash center.

Although unauthorized, the prototype creates a space where solidarity and survival exchanges can occur thus establishing different shades of legitimity within the neighborhood regarding poverty, available resources and the occupation of the public space. The prototype has already found a person who takes care of it, called Curcanul, a half-homeless half-neighbour who lives in a house neaby. He periodically cleans the place and mediates some of the exchanges.

the collector

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more info coming soon

refugee equipment

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September 2015
Installation
Ghidigeni, Galați

A workshop was planned at the site of an abandoned palace from Galați county. We reacted to the invitation and to the site by gathering a series of stories and memories of the place that were reimagined in a long canvas drawing. The drawing becomes a purpose for engagement and interaction, but also an artifact that remains inside and can be continued or completed.

drawing at the palace

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Shelter blanket prototype
February 2015 - ongoing documentation
Bucharest

As our first practical response to the ongoing inquiry into habits of homelessness, the decision to make the blanket was triggered by the simple request of a person living in the street. The equipment engages with the urgent need of a warm sleeping shelter and the constant spatial mobility of homelessness. Its materiality and choice of fabric is determined by closeness to the body and vulnerability to exterior conditions. As possession of personal belongings is constantly challenged by this way of life, the blanket also offers a possibility for carrying and storage.

Two blankets were given to street sleepers in Bucharest. The first one was stolen after the first night and the second one was used daily and stored in a out-of-use public fountain throughout winter and spring.

We are interested in finding alternative ways to understand, recuperate and improve the already formed living network of street people. Raising up the issue of informality for such help interventions, the shelter blanket is the first prototype in a series of survival equipments that have an operative purpose for the ongoing research on street practices and living conditions.

homeless equipment 1

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The locker, the pavilion and the collector
July 2015 - ongoing
Bucharest

We came across a group of street children who grew up in a orphanage in the '90. Encoutering their current living arrangements in relation to a municipal night shelter was the beginning for a new series of survival equipments that deals with the issue of informal architecture at the scale of a neignbourhood and the mediation between the Public Administration and the Civil Society.

The project addresses a marginal situation, both social and spatial, proposing the addition of three equipments of help and exchange in the transit space outside the Night Shelter in a peripheral neighborhood. As an exercise of redefining the limit without changing the internal administration of the shelter, the intervention uses the existing spatial and human resources in order to respond to the daily needs of the current users of the space.

The project consists of three urban equipments: the Locker, the Pavilion and the Collector, intended for long term use and easy maintenance.

homeless equipment 2

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    collector
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    street vendor
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    rough sleeper
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    antiquarian
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    parking man
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November 2014 - ongoing
Research - Bucharest dossier - instances of living and exchange
Bucharest

Poverty describes a series of resilient practices that can be developed as alternative models of living and exchange. They are examples of ad-hoc solidary and equitable networks of mutual interest.

The collections of situations found on the street is organized throught five recourent practices - trash collecting, street commerce, book trading, rought sleeping, car parking. We were curious to find out what people without income, shelter or a proper ID card do in order to acquire the minimum necessary to survive. We intend to focus on the practices of such people that, despite having an important presence in the city, remain invisible in public space due to lack of representation.

These practices come as a self-formulated reactions to the usual production of the city. Clustered in parallel networks of discriminated social groups that try to survive by creating and recreating a particular living environment inside the city. Using the existing physical infrastructure, they develop parasite-situations that occupy or use leftover spaces and amenities. The new situations insert themselves in a tolerant intermediary space, where fiscal and spatial monopole is week, finding the circumstances needed for continuing their existence. Although marginal and poorly tolerated, these resilient practices permanently adapt to crisis, finding new ways to survive and improve, remaining a constant presence in Bucharest’s public space.

* Bucharest Dossier gathers, studies and formulates street life instances as found in the present city.

bucharest dossier - Instances of living and exchange

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November 2014 - ongoing
Research - Bucharest dossier - street narratives
Bucharest

By mapping the daily activities, places and routs, we found that in the absence of a house, a network of extended living is continuously developed to make up for this protected perimeter, and provides spaces for shelter, sleep, food, bathing, laundry. Through a series of local deals that undermine market economy and consist of people, places, things and rules, survival situations are constructed to make sense of living on the street.

Engaged in perpetual situations of survival, the homeless are not able to follow the daily routines of the majority. They occupy and recuperate the spaces needed for their substandard living situation, redefining the social and spatial environment through alternative practices that undermine market economy and centralized political decisions that ignore their existence. For survival, they use informal networks of help and exchange, gathering around ad-hoc communities that have their own series of situations, rules, places, territories and practices that make sense of living in the street.

These actors and their informal networks describe a different city than the one of the middle class, as their practices and places are chosen and developped through intuition, testing, permission and tollerance. Due to their lack of representation, the preocupation of municipal administration for providing spatial amenities for these underprivileged groups is insuficient and programs of prevention and social reintegration remain unclear.

In search of an operative means of documentation, we focus on a series of key issues: rules, risk, living, exchange and habits of resilience particulary described: the personal file, the cartography, the inventory, the site, the images.

* Bucharest Dossier gathers, studies and formulates street life instances as found in the present city.

bucharest dossier - street narratives

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    intervention plan
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    assemblage
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June 2015
Help equipment
Bucharest

Temporary intervention scenarios explore a way to offer immediate assistance to people that live on the street. Occupying different leftover spaces - unbuildable, abandoned, with contested property - the interventions consist of modular structures that are brought on site in packs of pipes, fittings and tarpaulin. Easy to put together or take apart, they create a space necessary for help that can be used by institutions and NGOs focused on helping the underprivileged. Bringing together initiatives with similar purposes can formulate scenarios that blur the distinction between centralized and ad hoc help for a better use of existing resources.

temporary shelter

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    ground level
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    first floor
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    second floor
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    section
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June 2015
Ngo building scenario
Bucharest

An association that supervises temporary intervention sites in the city shares the courtyard of a municipal social care institution. The Base is the starting point of the network of help and supplies that assist the arrangements of extended living of those that survive on the street. The Base is also a local platform, involved in neighborhood activities by mediating different levels of urgency.

ngo bucharest