karl karam
Diploma 7

Guildhall, L'Aquila

When an earthquake strikes a city a multitude of structures fail.


Buildings collapse, the infrastructure is hit, people require access to water shelter and food.


To address these immediate survival needs, there is usually a very swift and effective response.


However the indeterminate timescale for long term reconstruction has a profoundly damaging effect

as social fabric and structures start fading and failing. In l’Aquila, following the 2009 earthquake, the

intervention of the government has exacerbated this social disintegration by excluding the citizens

from the city for an indeterminate period. Consequently people are pushed out of the city center

into the peripheries. The day to day interaction and exchanges which characterise space and urban

uses in the city are quickly lost.


The exclusion policy has resulted in an incomplete plan on how to address the issues of their city,

where to invest and how to take action.


This project posits a speculative system devised to react at quicker pace to long term reconstruction

by setting a system in which knowledge is passed on from professionals to inhabitant. A system

which requires the cooperation and collaboration of the local population.


A series of pavilions will be built inside the destroyed city; studios, workshops and galleries which

will be built and populated by the people of l’Aquila using the existing worker's guild organisations

as a committee to implement the strategy.


As they are completed, these pavilions will be lifted into the collapsed voids providing spaces in

which people can exchange, interact, debate, and be the source of a common memory that will

remain after the reconstruction process.


To achieve this, three dimensional scanning technology is ustilised to translate the destruction into

a digital template . This information permits a precise and diagnostic approach to securing and

refitting the buildings of l’Aquila. Digital imprints of the faults and damage, by borrowing techniques

from medicine and dentristry speculate on community building a precise fit between what is

existing and the inserted pavilions.

L'Aquila is dead, after the erthquake the social fabric of the old town has dissolved. Hope of change and better consideration, lost.The site. One of the most affected squares in the city of l'Aquila.
Scanning technology allows a surgical analysis of the site. Translating cracks and voids into digital information. Line drawing exploring and studying the effects of the earthquake on the buildings and square. Helping to identify the buildings that need to be addressed.Pavilions built by the people of l'Aquila, designed and conceived to slot into the building voids created by the earthquake. Structurally securing these buildings and providing spaces for a common memory to exist in order to re-establish a social fabric.Section showing the transition between existing building and pavilions.
Crafted bronze beams will secure a perfect fit and serve as a structural support both to the existing damaged building and the inserted pavilion.Pavillions, slotted into place.
The people of l'Aquila gathering for the building process, knowledge is passed, exchange happens.
A common memory is re-established, and a social fabric restored in the long-term.