Rebuilding Mosul, Rebuilding Iraq’s Liberated Areas: Mosul’s Housing  © 2017
Status: Competition
Client: The Rifat Chadirji Prize for Architecture 2017
Design: Monolab, team: J.W. van Kuilenburg with Letizia Armentano, Valentina Battilocchi, Consuelo Cenci, Agnese Giovagnoli, Angelien van der Snel, Alesandro Volpi.


…methods and local communities


This proposal provides a flexible modular system for building city blocks and organic urban patterns in Mosul’s post war situation. Citizens and local authorities will co-operate together to ensure the development of communities.

Gradually growing
The urban layout will gradually grow with homes. The citizens will define where the plot of their new home is situated within a given urban layout and will define the layout of their modules. The size of the plot and the number of starting modules depend on the number of persons.

Reusing the debris
It is based on residential modules, made of prefabricated structures, through the re-use of recycled materials from the debris of Mosul’s demolished buildings. The combining of modules creates countless variations of residential typologies.

The local authorities will recycle concrete and steel building components from the ruins and will build the foundations and ground floor modules for the citizens and returnees as a start. The challenge is to give the citizens maximum initiative to choose where to live, how to expand and what accessories to use.

Citizens expand their homes
The citizens will expand their homes over the years with locally manufactured screens, glass folding partitions, rooftop shading, etc. by themselves. The simple prefab systems promote the use of local manpower and materials.

Public vs private
To cool urban micro climate, narrow alleys create shadow and all new homes have a patio as a functional heart that passively cools and ventilates all rooms by plants and water, as an open place for comfort, family activities and potential business activities.

Public spaces and alleys are considered as expansions of the home and trigger the development of social life as well as the many shops and workspaces that can be located in the modules.

The ground floor level is activated together with rooftop life. The alley system provides community activities. The architecture is monolithic but with a small grain of volumes with diverse possibilities for opening up.