32. Kunlé Adeyemi docks Makoko Floating School – Waterfront
Participant: Adeyemi and his studio NLÉ.
Winner of the Golden Lion at the 2016 Venice Biennale
Nigerian architect Kunlé Adeyemi brought his floating school to the Venice Biennale, as part of his ongoing research into building for flood-prone regions. Adeyemi and his studio NLÉ developed an “improved, prefabricated and industrialised iteration” of the Makoko Floating School in Lagos, Nigeria, adapting its engineering to suit the Venetian climate conditions.
The Amsterdam and Lagos based studio originally created Makoko Floating School as a building prototype for coastal regions of Africa that have little permanent infrastructure because of unpredictable flooding. Like the original, MFS II is a pointed three-storey floating structure. It spans 220 square metres, over three floors that decrease in scale towards the building’s apex.
“Just as our first prototype sourced local intelligence from the Makoko waterfront community, MFS II is an improved iteration designed to suit Venetian conditions and a wider waterfront population,” said the studio. “Adapted for easy prefabrication and rapid assembly, it is more robustly engineered and affords a wide range of uses. It is mobile, deployable, and ready to be reassembled at its next waterfront.” MFS II was assembled for the Biennale by four builders in just 10 days – using one tonne of metal and 13.5 tonnes of wood for the structural framework, and 256 plastic barrels as a floatation device. It forms the venue for an exhibition titled Waterfront Atlas, which looks at developing coastal communities.