Living on Margins

Title: Living on Margins. Building Resilience in Makoko Community

Author: Keren Obiuzu

Year: 2020

Abstract: The aim of this design thesis is to research how urban design practitioners can deploy design methods to support Makoko community in building resilience, with a deeper focus on the social urban issues faced by the community.

Makoko is 1 of 42 informal settlements in Lagos, Nigeria. Facing forceful evictions and displacements. The proliferation of informal settlement has been caused mainly by rural urban migration. This drastic increase in population has led to major urban and social challenges, in this thesis the focus being on sanitation and threats of eviction. It aims to reduce the challenges faced by the community by designing resilience-based solutions. Firstly, by empowering the community through the design of a civic center and then to creating a more inclusive environment by reintegrating and connecting Makoko to other parts of Lagos. Finally, through advocacy raising awareness to specific barriers faced by the Makoko community, encouraging the community to advocate for their rights to the city.

Based on the theory of care, intersectionality, inclusive practices, and critical spatial practice this thesis proposed bottom-up strategies that encourage community participation and interdisciplinary approach to support the community in building resilience. Alongside the enhancement of competence, coexistence, and resilience amongst the Makoko community, the adoption of growth-oriented strategies has provided a context conducive to substantiating the resilience over time. The only way to test the effectiveness of these interventions is to test a prototype on site. If successful this has the potential to spark change within informal settlements in the context of Lagos, and possibly lead to policy changes. This is the direction I hope to research and build in the future.

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L I V I N G O N M A R G I N S Building Resilience in Makoko Community © 2020 by Keren Obiuzu is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.