"Open Source House" international design competition

Location: Accra, (GH)
Year: 2010
with: Arch. Viola Toccafondi
Status: competition entry

The OSH Competition called for the development of a dwelling for disadvantage people in Accra: the proposal had to foresee a self assembling, extendable and sustainable house that respected the traditional lifestyle of African populations.


Africasa is based on modules that once distributed on the assigned site generate the ground floor of the unit. Shape and dimensions of the modules are thought so that their architectural composition would allow spatial flexibility as well as structural regularity: two modules, one multiple of the other (4x3m and 2x3m), are repeated to form a U shape on the site, thus recalling the traditional courtyard of Ghanan houses.


This typology assigned a particular importance to the court that represents the core of the building: it functions for circulation between the day and night zones as well as a space for familiar sociality, hosting several daily activities.


The project aims to offer the Ghanians an architectural product able to conjugate traditional living and sustainable technologies.

More specifically, the unit is built with local materials such as MDF wood, bamboo and adobe and can be easily assembled so to foster self construction. The construction cost is accessible and the environmental impact is reduced to the minimum.