Project Name: URBAN DESIGN OF MIRPUR ARTERIAL ROAD
Client Name:DHAKA SOUTH CITY CORPORATION
Location :Dhanmondi 27- New market Road
Period: February 2017
Project Type :Urban Design Compitition
Status : Winning entry
Design Team:Ziaul Islam,Rashed Hasan Chowdhury ,Shakib Ahamed Lam,Jimi Chakma
Accolades: Winning Entry in Open Urban Design Compitition
As design process, we asked simple questions. These are both asked by us, as well as by dwellers of site.
Can we make Dhaka “My Dhaka”?
The intention of designing a communication interface is to increase interaction among people, and with the city. Dhaka contain people coming from different corners of Bangladesh, it is necessary to grow a feeling of ownership of city among them. People aware of his neighbor, area and city will be the first to come up with ideas of betterment of city. The communication method will aware people to think about what should happen to city next.
The idea is to primarily develop a branding campaign associated with developing ownership as well as responsibilities towards this city. Visual branding campaign will cover the service points provided by city authority, encouraging users to discuss about it, sharing ideas and criticize. First phase of branding might start with a participatory design approach. Implementation of this design must contain a discussion with inhabitants of this area.
Can we make walking fun?
Walking around the city can be compared with watching a movie, there is a plot (might be some plot holes) there is twist, emotions but it must be stitched with good cinematography, production design and making. For sure, there are plots, twists, and emotions around this city, but design should provide necessary utilities. The design incorporates a service hub containing wifi, drinking water facility, recharging point, lavatories etc. these are intended to provide services but most importantly, to enhance communication among its user. A little talk, some new friends and might be some ideas about how this city is what we need.
Can overpass offer more?
Overpasses somehow became an icon of fatigue, a simple connection to parallel side of streets is directed in a lengthy, stressful journey. We are not here to rule them out, we just want to expand their role. An additional area with the overpass to essentially broaden it’s scale which are expected to use as variety of function like temporary shops, art exhibition, sitting, food court and many more considering their location and demand. The mezzanine extended parallel to road to act as shed for compulsory services like bus stop, lavatory, medicine store etc. Women entrepreneurs expected to be encouraged for business in these area to ensure a female friendly environment.
Can we keep street hawkers?
Existence of street hawker is perhaps most debated issue in Mirpur road. Rehabilitation In different place is more like wiping their identity as street hawkers and bring them into mainstream business. But in terms of sustainability, they are consuming less power, creating wide range of client group, and can easily move into different places. Only problem regarding them is the congestion in pick hours and degradation of pedestrian environment. The design proposes to make a shift system throughout the day, official time of operation for new market and surrounding area is from 10 am to 8 pm. In proposed model, there is a planning for overall night market with larger area for hawkers which will operate from 8 pm till midnight, some special occasion like “chand raat” might extend to late nights. This vshopping complex won’t face the congestion, and thirdly, an extended activity throughout night will ensure safety.
Can the street be safe for neighborhood?
Safety issues should be considered in two ways, firstly safeguarding pedestrians from the vehicular road, secondly, ensuring peaceful movement of pedestrians free from vandalism. Each nodal points are equipped with zebra crossing of similar height and material texture, sub roads along Mirpur road will have provision of controlling accessibility, according to time and necessity, close roads could act as small scale public area.
Preventing vandalism is directly related to lighting design of street. The design proposes lighting designed in comfortable distance and height. Segments of pedestrian having non permeable wall are proposed with indirect LED light to prevent forming negative space.
Can the street respond to adjacent use?
There are basically four category of building interface in terms of accessibility.
*Building with single pedestrian entry. Most of them are shopping complex and commercial areas having precise access control. These interface also contains vehicular entry point. They lacks boundary walls as they need their visitors to enjoy building.
Design issues are to ensure separation from vehicular road via green and bench, clean access to basement parking and ensuring unrestricted pedestrian movement.
*independent row of shops. Generally they can operate separately and lacks common control. Sometimes they use frontage illegally.
Design issues are to encourage awnings and temporary shading rather than large illuminated branding.
*pedestrian with perforated wall interface. Generally open playgrounds contains such character. This interface permit spacious pedestrian, lacks activity.
Design intervention includes adding stepped green and sittings.
*non-permeable wall. Residential blocks generally contain such character. Controls and access are strictly prohibited. In many ways responsible for negative and dark spaces.
Design consideration includes greening of the wall to create pleasant view and avoiding unwanted branding on public property.
Can we manage traffic sustainably?
Dhaka is undergoing a massive change in case of traffic and transportation system. In few years we will have MRT as a reality. BRT will come as complementary part. There are lot to expect, lot for hopeful future, but these are tough to predict with accuracy. In such transition time, transportation strategies should focus on the safe and sound environment of pedestrian. As for our design consideration, we proposed a separate bus lane, flexible for changing situation. Rickshaw and bike are now operating in same lane and we think of it as temporarily sustainable.
Mostly the design intervention includes narrowing lanes to optimum width and ensuring illegal overtake. These gives more space in pedestrian and parallel parking.
Guideline on execution
Execution model includes a detailed design phase after community discussion. The proposals should be conveyed, communicated and mutually agreed within the authorities like City Corporation, local politicians and lawmaker, and business men and shop holders. Ideas arising from there should considered and feasibly included. Construction hierarchy should be given on construction of intervention. Pedestrian intervention should be mutually agreed and alternate ideas should be considered.