Archive for the ‘understanding al jazeerah al hamra’ Category

So, this is some of my final work. I see this as a work in progress, a discussion, one way to regenerate the village. I hope to post the rest of my proposal soon. My aim for this thesis, this blog, is not to propose a finished project for the village. I want to generate understanding, knowledge and interest for as much people as possible. Presenting something that is up for discussion, that we can use as grounds for further work. There are so many things to consider in regenerating such a unique historical place. Religious, archaeological, architectural, historical, social and economical. But the one word that embrace these elements, is SUSTAINABLE. So, how can we create a sustainable village?  a sustainable new village, based on authenticity , humbleness and future needs. How can we best take the knowledge of what was, and create living space?

part of thesis

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the issue with the parking is difficult. but i have decided to situate it as close to the center of the village as possible.  this, for several reasons. one, is because of heat. the car is as fact, and the heat is a fact. in summer, it gets close to 50 degrees, and you do not want to walk for 10 or even 3 minutes from your car to your house.  secondly, to generate more life and use of the suq-axis.  if you park your car at the outer perimeter of the village, the chance of going in to the center and doing your shopping is smaller. by putting it in the core of the suq, it will be more attractive to use it on a more regular basis. another is use of space. there is a good deal of space in this area, and this will make the logistic of the village much more practical and smooth. and, lastly, to gather all cars, and create some sort of shelter for them, both for the cars, but also to eliminate the visual pollution that cars will have in this village.

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with the new residential area in the 70`s, the public arena was turned outwards towards the new coastal road.  the social interaction was then on the outer boundaries of the residential area.

my proposal to extend this line into the old village, will create a new public arena right in the core of the village. social interaction becomes the spine of al jazerrah al hamra.

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this pdf is just a simplification, showing some of my ideas.  two of my main focuses:

the mosques as social hubs & the extension of the public arena, into the village.

analyzing al jazeerah al hamra – introducing some ideas

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there are 12 existing mosques in the village, each placed according to the social surroundings.  the history tells us that when Muslim conquerors established themselves somewhere, a mosque was put up first, and then the military camp was built around it.

So, to re-generate social life in this abandoned village, one could start with the mosques again.  the mosques are already there, serving almost as hot-spots for the village. So, by focusing new social programs around the mosques, it establishes an authentic approach to the situation.

the inner space of the mosque will still be sacred to the prayers, and still function as the mosque we know today.

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areesh houses is a suggested fifth housing style in the history of al jazeerah al hamra. because there are no existing traces of these houses, only oral tellings, it is difficult to document the historical aspect of it.  but the style can be imliped in anecdotal references to temporary seasonal housing at the interior edge of the village for the khawatir and shihuh tribes, boat crew-members.  such construction has been extensively documented in northern ras al khaimah and the shimal plains by Walter Dostal.

oral histories within emirati families described al jazeerah al hamra as originally consisting of all areesh houses.

these photos are from Al Darwish heritage village in ras al khaimah. he has reconstructed several houses in an historical context.

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the use of palm-tree as a building material started about 500 years ago. a house built of palm frond/leaves are called Areesh house. in al jazeerah al hamra, there are no existing evidence of areehs houses, just material used in roof, support or flooring.  because the zaabi people worked in a seasonal, matter, with pearling/fishing & date-farming, they had access to the resource, palms. and developed skilled techniques both in constructional matter for men, and hand-Craftmenship for  women. they also used mangrove poles (chandals) witch was much stronger and more durable than palm trunks.

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