by Debashree Pal (MDes '12)
Debashree Pal worked on a slum redevelopment project with MicroHome Solutions in New Delhi. The goal of the project was to give high priority to livelihood, health, sanitation and infrastructure without displacing people from the site. The density of the site was huge and it was challenging to provide better infrastructure and open spaces while maintaining the density and vertical limitations of the site. The process involved several community interactions at micro and macro scale trying to understand the issues that the community currently faces. At the end of the internship there were two design iterations which were ready for government approval.
The project was funded by MHT, a nonprofit organization that provided housing and infrastructure solutions for slum communities throughout northern India. According to the Indian Ministry of Housing and Poverty Alleviation reports that nearly 2million people in Delhi live in urban slums and they had proposed a new agenda, Rajiv Ayas Youjna(RAY) according to which the slum dwellers should be resettled with better infrastructure and facilities on their currently occupied site. This was the first proposed insitu redevelopment project in the state of Delhi and was also being considered to be taken up by the government as a pilot for future slum redevelopments in the region.