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5 Re-adaptation of Cultural Attributes; Public Housing Design Framework

5 Re-adaptation of Cultural Attributes; Public Housing Design Framework

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7 Cultural Determinants and Spatial Patterns of Public Housing …

The re-adaptation of public housing residents with their cultural tendencies is

assured with the housing that culturally and architecturally fits their perception of

abode. Therefore, transformation benefits formally exhibited in the transformed

units represent emerging indigenous urban architecture. The concept of indigenous

urban architecture lies in the ‘recognition region’—an interface where there is a

collective agreement between the etic and emic ideals to coexist.


Culture-Responsive Design

The convergence of the seven domains to relate the proposed design framework

substantially presents the features desired in a culture-responsive design guidelines.

Certainly, the procedural approach ensures that the suggested guidelines are

grounded evidences that evolve from public housing users’ experiences and

housing transformation initiatives. Satisfaction derived from functional ability is

weighted by effective execution of routine activities which reflects a social system

culturally inclined to gender, age and privacy. The main implication to the users

expresses the performance of activity to be more significant than its hosting space.

Thus, the consistency of the emergent pattern regardless of varieties witnessed in

arrangement affirms the cultural satisfaction derived in the spaces formed. As a

result, despite the technological impact, ordered spaces align with family structure

across the household’s life cycle allowing home ownership which supports required

transformation practices. Another implication is the significance that lies with the

transformation process and practice which facilitates changes to be made in phases

as need for changes evolve with time. Developing houses in phases from a common

core is therefore highly asserted by this study.


Emerging Urban Architectural Character

This research provides evidences that prompt insight into housing outlook as a

growing structure with resident’s behavioural tendencies determining the growth

pattern. Until architects accept this concept of house as a ‘flexible living object’

configuration, issues will persist. Therefore, designers should understand ‘cultural

design paradigm’ appropriate in public housing design in culture sensitive situations in order to succeed. Accordingly, occupation after the completion of core unit

of public housing should be seen as the end of the first stage of its creation. The

growth into maturity is achieved during the transformation period and process.

Consequently, the architectural character that emanates from the transformation

practices is considered indigenous urban architecture worthy of research and

adoption. It displays potentials for students to learn and architects to imbibe and

practice towards achieving sustainable public housing design.

7.6 Conclusion




The outcome indicates how transformation benefits have reflected in the spatial

patterns that evolved from the transformation process. Property ownership provided

occupants the impetus to harness these benefits, hence satisfying their needs.

Therefore, ownership transfer of public housing after core provision improves

liveability and shapes successive phases of development. In addition, homogeneous

provisions of core units provide the basic initial layouts with flexibility for anticipated transformation due to changes in user needs.

In sum, the discoveries imply that the design patterns that contain transformation

benefits and generated from real-life situations require operationalisation as applicable foundation in public housing design. The benefits include achieving additional functional spaces such as rooms, toilets, outdoor spaces and living rooms

which increase occupants’ livelihood configuration and quality.


Mberu BU (2005) Who moves and who stays? Rural out-migration in Nigeria. J Popul Res


Miles MB, Huberman AM, Saldaña J (2013) Qualitative data analysis: a methods sourcebook.

Sage, Thousand Oaks

Chapter 8

Rethinking Sustainable Public Housing

Design in Cultured Communities

Abstract Applicable guidelines on sustainable housing design in culture responsive societies emanated from insight of the user rooted in response of the inhabitants to space use. Indeed, public housing transformation has enabled inhabitants

reshape their dwelling with attributes of culture informing their required layout.

Accordingly, planning thoughts directed to liveability of the user in indigenous

insights as a pathway towards rethinking of public housing design was established.

It is echoed as culture responsive design and architectural character which is the

thrust of this chapter. This is achieved through the process of re-adaptation of root

culture by inhabitants, renewed planning, and attainment of desired configuration

thus emphasising importance of the user in the process.

Keywords Culture responsive

Reshaped dwelling


Á Indigenous architecture Á Planning paradigm Á


The concept of culture-responsive design and indigenous urban architectural character can no longer be ignored. The outcome of this book relates two insights on the

significance of integrating cultural values in public housing design via the platform of

housing transformation. Inhabitants’ behavioural responses in space interaction

which produced transformed units that expresses useful benefits gave rise to these

insights. They provide sustainable guidelines for future public housing design.


Inhabitants’ Adaptation with the Transformed

Pattern Replicating the Root

Planning and design of sustainable public housing should recognise residents’

persistent desire for sociocultural liveability. The transformed public housing unit

seems to have provided occupants with the desired spatial needs offering them

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

A.D. Isah, Urban Public Housing in Northern Nigeria,

The Urban Book Series, DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-40192-8_8



8 Rethinking Sustainable Public Housing Design …

cultural preferences in space formation. The re-adaptation, new planning and

layout concepts have ensured housing satisfaction of users, thus improving

occupancy ratio, design arrangement and operational effectiveness of spaces

enhanced through transformation process. Therefore, attributes of spatial configuration rooted in culture are affirmed to sustain public housing design and delivery



Indigenous Participation in Sustainable Public

Housing Planning

Global strategy on sustainable development for shelter campaigns for the consideration of users’ cultural agitations. Reliance on the previous experiences to project

how consumers participate in defining their housing needs becomes inevitable. It

provides useful design information which extends housing formation beyond

occupation to the period of use and operation, and also offers inhabitants, the

opportunity to participate in housing production. However, the lack of ingredient is

the formalisation of indigenous core cultural space uses. Such that at initial stages,

future design projections and culture-influenced spaces could be standardise in

order to phase development of housing which optimises the built environmental

quality and ensures sustainability.


Rethinking Public Housing Design Concept

Considerably, this research demonstrated the need to rethink the concept of public

housing. Deviating from the concept of a one-time finished structure to a package

that spans through inhabitants’ habitation cycle allows for subsequent inevitable

transformation. The impact of transformation has overshadowed the violations

emphasised by regulators. Therefore, rather than ignoring the potentials therein,

regulations to standardise patterns that support design elements for culture reflective

public housing design are essential. By this, developers can easily adopt the

paradigm, and further research and practice by architects would be assured. Public

housing provision has advanced beyond homogenous provisions to heterogeneous

forms that reflect innovative social concepts of inhabitants’ liveability. In these

intuitions lies the desired public housing conception that results from an empirical

research raising issues that are outlined below for consideration.

• Transformation practices are yet to gain full understanding and inclusion in the

provisions of building regulations.

• Family sociocultural values connected with the root are reflected in transformed

houses, they blend with urban ideals, and the impact of technology gives rise to

hybrid urban architecture.

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