Architecture Via Aceh
There are many swaths of land that are deemed unsuitable to build on and occupy. These places, however, are rarely within an established city. The Canterbury earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 left areas in central Christchurch with such significant land damage that it is unlikely to be re-inhabited for a considerable period of time. These areas are commonly known as the ‘Red Zone’.This thesis explores redevelop in on volatile land through innovative solutions found and adapted from the traditional Indonesian construction techniques. Currently, Indonesia’s vernacular architecture sits on the verge of extinction after a cultural shift towards the masonry bungalow forced a rapid decline in their occupation and construction. The 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami illustrated the bungalows’ poor performance in the face of catastrophic seismic activity, being outperformed by the traditional structures. This has been particularly evident in the Rumah Aceh construction of the Aceh province in Northern Sumatra. Within a New Zealand context an adaptation and modernisation of the Rumah Aceh construction will generate an architectural response not currently accepted under the scope of NZS 3604:2011; the standards most recent revision following the Canterbury earthquake of 2010 concerning timber-based seismic performance. This architectural exploration will further address light timber structures, their components, sustainability and seismic resilience. Improving new builds’ durability as New Zealand moves away from the previously promoted bungalow model that extends beyond residential and into all aspects of New Zealand built environment.