Kampung Hybridisation - Евразийская Премия
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Kampung Hybridisation

The expansion of modern capitalism in cities has resulted in the erosion traditional values and indigenous cultural identities. Today, these forms of gentrification are ubiquitous in Asian cities and causing urban villages to face an uncertain future. This project aims to aid the survival of these vernacular settlements as they are fundamental to city’s equilibrium. Today, the formal and informal sectors of the city constantly depend on each other despite the reluctance of the former to acknowledge it. The vernacular enclave ensures a balance in the social landscape of the city. Therefore ‘upgrading’ the village to meet the western image of an ‘ideal city’ would be detrimental to its urban development.

Kampung Baru remains as one of the few surviving villages in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. As years have passed, the settlement (what was once an agricultural settlement) have developed into an oasis surrounded by countless development. The village remains untouched as a purest form of urbanisation located in the heart of the city. The 223-acre Malay settlement is often associated with notion of under-development and backwardness. This is evident through the countless attempts by the authorities to redevelop the village into a modern metropolis, which have received strong resistance from the public. This project aims to highlight distinct cultural values which have fuelled the survival of this urban village.

This project aims to encourage the persistence of localism through several interventions. The vernacular enclave must be given larger purpose in the evolution of the city. One of the strategies include overlaying networks intersecting both formal and informal sectors. The village and the city centre are physically divided by a motorway. A pedestrian link is proposed to connect the village to the city. The pedestrian link will act as a mediator, creating new networks of physical and social relations while breaking the rural-urban boundary. Re-linking the city to the vernacular settlement will create a new dynamic between the two.

As Asian cities are gradually losing its indigenous character, it is important that housing proposals include vernacular elements to preserve its cultural fabric. The distinguishing factors that separate a kampung from the city include the unique adoption of land laws, social structures, active street life and a stronger sense of dependence among its residence. These values are interpreted as distinct forms of local identities. This cultivates social systems which enable residents to form their own kampung lifestyle. Incorporating vernacular elements will result to a higher amount of engagement between residents which is ultimately the core of kampung culture.

The project envisions the creation of a ‘contemporary kampung’ through the preservation of heritage, the planning of new housing typologies and the transformation of Kampung Baru into a cultural hub. The proposal for the new housing scheme will be in the form of prefabricated tectonics that becomes the generation of a contemporary Malay village. The new typology will accommodate the hybridisation of kampung morphologies that complements the existing fabric.


3 d place


Haseef Rafiei


United Kingdom