Houari Boumedienne agricultural village
Abadla, Béchar, Argelia
31.016667 | -2.733333000000016
The experience the Taller de Arquitectura has gained in the construction of housing developments was called on by the Algerian government, through the agency of France, to be applied to the construction of new centres of population in semi-desert areas where agriculture was to be promoted. The unsophisticated construction techniques and the absence of a professionally trained workforce prevented the completion of part of the project. The composition of the urban nucleus on the basis of the combination of single-family dwellings offered infinite possibilities, which had to be limited and serialized in order to keep the cost of the operation as low as possible. The geometrical forms chosen, drawn from Arabic and Mediterranean traditions, made for a first grouping of two or three dwellings laid out around a courtyard to compose a block. A grouping of several blocks composed a neighbourhood, and several neighbourhoods, a town, with the proportion of built space to open public space being kept constant. A large central square, such as in found in all Arab towns, serves as marketplace, meeting place, setting for festivities and spectacles and vital axis articulating the town.