122 MAPUTO CASAS MELHORADAS – BETTER CHEAP HOUSING IN MAPUTO Casas Melhoradas is a Danish-initiated housing development project meant to improve the living conditions of low-income groups in Maputo. The aim of the project is to improve living conditions in Maputo. At present Maputo is experiencing explosive population growth, and large parts of the population live with limited access to infrastructure, and many spend several hours a day on transport. The distances between urban functions are shorter in a densely built city, which increases mobility and makes the infrastructure less expensive. The project attempts to develop new dwelling types that can make the city denser. PHASE 1 The first Casas Melhoradas dwelling prototype was built in 2014. The concept takes its starting point a simple modular system linking small units which gradually are expanded into two-storey dense-low housing. An alternative model was also tried out where light wooden elements were prefabricated in a local joiner’s workshop, transported to the building site and assembled. The house is an interpretation of the traditional casa de madeira e zinco with an improved indoor climate. The houses is raised above the ground to protect it from flooding. PHASE 2 In 2015 the second prototype of the project was built. The home consists of a concrete plinth with a twostorey wooden house above it. The outdoor areas between the road and the house form a transitional zone between outside and inside, where there is room for cooking, home comforts and interaction with passers-by. The three-storey tower dwelling consisting of two home units is situated in a low-income neighbourhood that consists exclusively of one-storey homes, and thus serves as a radical example of how space and infrastructure can be used more efficiently. The project expects to build 10-15 homes in the course of 2016.
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