The Mewoki Hubs concept suggests a wide network of community hubs. The design of each should reconsider the relationships that locals have with society, working lifestyles and the natural environment.
Let’s take a look:
The Hubs concept is to design and build modern and networked community hubs that promote social fusion, sustainable lifestyles and economic productivity.
The objective is to increase self-sufficiency, improve overall living standards and present a commercially attractive opportunity for investors.
Hub design should consistently deliver a social centre at the heart of a housing development. The primary unction being a versatile nerve centre for the modern community’s needs.
Relationship to the Wider Economy
In the context of our modern economy, Hubs should design to alleviate pollution, de-intensify land values, promote energy sustainability, lessen urban sprawl, reduce traffic congestion, increase food sovereignty, mitigate crime levels and offset the overall carbon footprint.
Here’s how: The principal mechanisms to facilitate these benefits are primarily the same as those encouraging social involvement. Ultimately we’re talking about design of places that also makes good macro-economic sense.
Eco Village Model
Designing to encourage attendance, consequently serves the shared social, economic & environmental needs of a community.
So if Hubs can deliver a local venue that is versatile to the needs of a community and capable of delivering neighborhood services that people value then the overarching philosophy can be realised through the facilitation of collaboration.
How it looks
Naturally, all design and layouts should be customized to meet the specific needs and purpose of the local environment. Landscapes change and so do the needs and resources of a community. In particular, I’m calling for a mind shift around why we build these places and the value they serve in the long term. This demands professional architects but also goes beyond. Be liberal with your imagination and daring with your dreams.
Entrance Zone – Main module
The entrance is a lobby / cafe / bar / social area. Imagine a place to gather informally. The foyer may feature a reception or notice board. Primarily it’s a family area to hang out and meet others over a drink and a bite to eat. Let’s pretend it’s open plan, with lots of light and bathrooms nearby. You’ve been here before. It’s a comfortable social area.
Venue Zone – Auditorium
A big multi-purpose room. Flexible by design and ready for anything. This space is for Music, Art, Teaching, Gatherings, Ceremonies, Family occasions, whatever you want. It’s a versatile space designed to service workshops, events, classes and jam sessions.
Data Zone – Easy Office
A serviced facility that interfaces this hub with the wider network. It’s made for the creative economy commerce and located for convenience. Visualise desk space and drawing boards, workstations, conference facilities and even a data centre. This digital zone enables multimedia presentation and secure transaction. There’s even a screening rooms for private services. But this is not re-housing companies. This area is about providing access to services for individuals and interfacing with the nearby utility module
Utility Module – Bright Green
The heart of the operation and key to any commercial proposition. This module acts as an energy wholesaler between the community and the outside world. Firstly the residents can bulk buy their utilities and ensure the best pricing. Furthermore this module acts as a middleware layer that also provides local storage & commercial mechanisms for selling self-generated power back to the Grid. This allows wind turbines and solar panels to live on nearby dwellings. The surplus is stored or sold and thereby allowing efficiency and returns for the wider community.
Being a distribution centre, expect telecom links, smart metering systems and secure access to the local data centre. A loading dock can provide logistical services and even be fitted out as a charging bay for Electric Vehicles. Shared workshop space, storage depots, tool hire and seed banks. The idea is to make a utility zone universal and multi-functional.
Landscaping for Shared Land Use
Shared use enables more flexibility with landscape design. Food Sovereignty can be realized through residents growing their own Food in Allotments, Greenhouses and Orchards. Water Management could be recycled in various phases.
It’s an idea. I hope it provides scope for you to consider expanding such thoughts into stepping stones for our future. Look forward to hearing from you in the comments.