Projects Form-Based Codes Sustainability

Opticos Works with the Prince’s Foundation in Gabon, Africa

Opticos worked with the Prince’s Foundation to prepare a Master Plan and initial SmartCode calibration for Phase II of the Angondje New Town Master Plan in Gabon, Africa. Angondje is the largest growth area in Gabon with a proposed population of well over 100,000 people. Our work began with Daniel Parolek attending a design charrette in Libreville in October 2012.

The work culminated in the Angondje Phase II Master Plan, Vision, and SmartCode Development Report, which was released in December 2012. The Master Plan Vision was inspired by the President’s initiatives. “The President, Ali Bongo Ondimba, has a vision to turn Gabon into an emerging economy with added value industry and services whilst at the same time growing in line with the core principles of sustainable development,” the report states.

Below is a synopsis of what we did and where in the report (which can be downloaded here) it can be found.

  • Initial calibration of a locally-initiated SmartCode to make it responsive to the local tropical climate and the unique culture of the community:
    • Community unit type calibration (pages 25–27)
    • Defining general characteristics of tropical urbanism (page 36)
    • Transect zone calibration (pages 28–29)
    • Frontage type calibration (page 34)
    • Building disposition/building type characteristics for the SmartCode (page 37)
    • How to use the SmartCode
  • Creating a palette of appropriate tropical building types (pages 380–39)
  • Affordable Housing strategies—a phased approach to achieve to achieve affordability and allow for short term adaptability of the homes
  • Illustrative drawings representing three different types of urban centers

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