Winners and finalists
Urban and Public Design
I have grown up in Kibera, one of the largest urban slums in Africa. Just like other informal settlements and rural communities, residents in Kibera also lack quality and affordable housing and poor sanitation. However, in these communities a big challenge still exists. Plastic waste and illegal disposal of waste which increases the risk of contracting diseases that are brought about by poor hygiene is still common. This issue is however more serious during the rainy season because solid waste causes clogging of the poor drainage channels, the water is then directed to the households of residents displacing them and putting them at a higher risk of contracting diseases like diarrhea and cholera. Most houses are also made of low quality materials like mud and wood due to the high cost of construction materials. Our project recycles both plastic and glass waste to make affordable and long lasting building materials. One of the construction materials that is brick will be a unique design that will be made from a mixture of plastic, sand and cement to form interlocking plastic brick that is durable, affordable and also reduces the cost of construction. With this, we will bring a permanent solution to plastic and glass waste, reduce the cost of construction and make it affordable for the residents to have decent houses and landlords to renovate the poor structure while at the same time conserving the environment, reducing health risk brought by poor hygiene and create sustainable employment opportunities for the youths. We are not only focused on making construction materials but building healthier communities through recycling and waste management programs which will create a good relationship with the community and landlords who are one of our target customers. In order for us to easily get the waste we will distribute bins to each household and build garbage disposal points in urban slums and rural communities. By distributing bins we will be getting the raw materials ( plastic and glass waste ) straight from the source which will prevent pollution because the residents won’t have to throw their waste in rivers or on the streets which leads to another set of challenges. As we make construction materials affordable the idea is to re-invest back the money gained to support the daily operations and convert dumpsites into green spaces. Start environmental clubs in schools that will raise kids who are environmental activists who will care about the environment. We have so far managed to make prototypes of the interlocking plastic brick and the pavement tile.