Rebuilding Iraq’s Liberated Areas:  Mosul’s Housing Competition


Project name: OVER RUINS


Client : Tamayouz excellence awards and Rifat chadirji prize

Location: Mosul,Iraq

Type: Residential - Master Plan

Status: Competition

Date: SPT 2017

Scale: Large

The current ground of Mosul is filled with ruins of pre-war Mosul, remnants of different eras of city’s existence, forming a no-man’s land-layer in the city. The project is proposed to be situated in north part of the Mosul’s old city that experienced major destructions during war. The main concept of the project was to create an in-between urban space in this zone by lifting up the base level of the housing prototypes. The Ground level of the neighborhood is lifted up, and an open, dynamic and cool urban market is created underneath for the citizens that could retrieve their local businesses, provide a safe, healthy and sustainable urban experience, and improve people’s sense of belonging.

The local market is placed on a vast platform that is slightly higher than the city’s level, this platform’s cavity is filled with ruined buildings’ waste materials. A network of 5*5 meter-frame columns and shear walls hold the whole structure, the space between the structure’s elements provide different settings for trade and social activities. Some fragments of remaining valuable ruins are reserved and maintained in between the markets’ walls as and remaining history and memories of the city’s past.

The housing units are initially designed in three original simple but functional typologies that are concordant with structure frames, different compositions and arrangements of these typologies produce bigger and collective typologies for diverse living conditions. Through a careful arrangement of different typologies, different and varied neighborhood spaces are designed.

All of the housing units benefit from a central and private courtyard or a shaded terrace that provide them with cultural and religious privacy, maintain the environmental comfort, and empower the collective experience. The design, material and spatial strategy are inspired by local and vernacular architectural and environmental features. Roof parapets are embedded with a certain wind-catcher to harvest the wind, and windows are covered with shades in order to control the sun radiation.

Vertical farms are proposed to be installed on back walls of the houses to provide fresh food, recycle the housing water, and create job opportunities.