HAITI RECONSTRUCTION (Arcahaie Region)
Design Team: Jaime Correa with Steven Fett and Sonia Chao
Relinquishing its role as a combatant place of creativity, architecture has entered a dull epoch where its design methodology has become formulaic, dogmatic, oversimplified, and imperialistic. At the risk of being excommunicated from the ruling bureaucracies, architects are no longer allowed to incur into the healthy intellectual agitation that brought the modern metropolis to life in the first place; professionals are supposed to bow with devotion to the socio-political concerns of others while keeping quiet even in light of severe philosophical and professional contradictions.
Architecture and urbanism are two of the artistic fields with the greatest potential to solve most of the current environmental problems. Under the bleak environmental predicaments in Haiti, it is crucial to design and radicalize reality itself. It is no longer important to reproduce the images in the rear view mirror, but to form entities and to apply new rules to the room, the building, the city, the region, and even to our own everyday reality. Our task was not be to invent original forms but to assess the current conditions, to assemble unprecedented architectural combinations, and to use our findings as the basis for the production of new urban types and for the reconstitution of three existing towns in the Arcahaie region. These three projects (S-M-L) examine how self-imposed difficulties serve to imagine and generate emergent typologies.