Thursday, 22 March 2007

Mediterania Garden Residences, Indonesia


Project Name
Mediterania Garden Residences
Slipi, Jakarta-Barat, Indonesia
Completed 2005
Site Area
29,315 m2
Gross Floor Area
214,085 m2
Building Height
108 m
Number of Units
PT Jaya Lestari Persada, member of Agung Podomoro Group
Architecture Firm
PT Megatika International
Principal Architect
Junus Tjandra, IAI
Façade & Landscape
PT Imageqreator
Main Contractor
PT Total Bangun Persada, PT
Pembangunan Perumahan JO
Mechanical & Structural Engineer
PT Meltech Consultindo Nusa
Civil & Structural Engineer
Ketira Engineering Consultants
Ravisyah Aditya (image 1)

The Mediterania Garden Residences’ relatively simple façade with Mediterraneanstyle decorative elements and terracotta colours is an accessible architectural motif that appeals to its target audience of students and young professionals. While the project is not an icon from a design perspective, it stands out in Jakarta for its 2,600-plus apartments on 32 storeys.

Traditional development patterns in Indonesia favour low-rise, low-density living, which-given the pace of urban migration to Jakarta-has translated into sprawl and severe transportation problems. City planners and developers are now rethinking their strategy and housing is moving upward, rather than outward.

The trend towards high-rise living was given a boost in 2002 and 2004 when severe flooding made some middle-income families re-evaluate the advantages of living higher off the ground. Now, there is a
smattering of luxury high-rise developments, but the strong-growth segment of high-density living in Jakarta is targeted at the middle class. Indicative of the appeal, the Mediterania Garden Residences sold out in the first three months of 2006.

The Mediterania Garden Residences are built on a brownfield site in central Jakarta formerly occupied by slum housing. With the objective of reducing individual dependence on the automobile, the project planners took advantage of the site’s easy access to public transportation and opted not to construct a basement car-park. The Residences are located within easy reach of the traditional city bus system, the recently opened TransJakarta Busway (a dedicated-lane bus system) and the planned Monorail. The development is also minutes away from the Tomang highway junction, one of the biggest in Jakarta.

The project consists of two L-shaped towers and two T-shaped towers that are built around central gardens and a swimming pool. The architects maintained a small built footprint to increase green spaces—the buildings occupy only 20 percent of the site.

While the apartments have airconditioning to battle Jakarta’s humid heat, the architects have incorporated operable windows with coated glazing to reduce the solar heat gain. The buildings are also of different heights to aid in cross-ventilating the apartments. As the project has been built with middle-income residents in mind, the developer kept costs down by using ceramic tiles for flooring and exposed concrete for the ceiling. –Erwin Maulana/Christen Jamar

© Copyright 2006 FuturArc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.

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Lessons Learned, Continued

Interview: Munichy B. Edrees, head of Indonesian Architects Association (IAI), Yogyakarta chapter

In early August, some ten weeks after the earthquake, FuturArc met with Munichy B. Edrees head of the Yogyakarta chapter of the Indonesian Architects Association (IAI), to understand what architectural and urban planning factors are relevant as redevelopment and reconstruction efforts inch forward.

What factors does the IAI think are most responsible for the number of victims in the May earthquake disaster that affected Java and Yogyakarta in May? Was it because the buildings were not structurally sound and collapsed? Was it due to bad infrastructure, in that the pathways through the densely populated districts prevented rescuers getting in to help?
Munichy: In some of the collapsed houses, where there were many victims, it was because of weak building structure. When walls are made with clay bricks and badly mixed sand-cement mortar, they are not only weak but also rigid; that is, inflexible against the shift and force of an earthquake.

The impact of bad infrastructure-that the roads and streets are too narrow and the buildings too dense-also contributed to the number of victims. Many people either died or were injured when they ran to save themselves because they were hit by a fence or wall. Limited evacuation paths are also causing a delay in getting aid to the victims.

FuturArc: Taking a look at urban planning, will the post-earthquake reconstruction be different from the planning before the earthquake? What is the most important change that is needed?
It must be different to be prepared for another earthquake. The distance between buildings and the distribution of evacuation paths will be of special consideration in order to help get help and aid to the disaster victims.

FuturArc: In terms of studies of the structure and design of buildings and building materials, are the IAI and other relevant institutions making suggestions to make buildings safer? If so, are these suggestions being considered and applied by the victims and the government when rebuilding public facilities and/or housing?
Munichy: In conjunction with the university networks, the IAI established the Jogja-Jateng Architectural Quick Response (JAR) to support housing reconstruction in cooperation with the Public Works Department. We provide designs and advice to make new buildings safer in case of another earthquake. In some places, the IAI and JAR have developed village models so that, in these villages, all the buildings are built in line with suggestions from the IAI and JAR.

It is imperative that buildings are built to meet existing building standards. That will require training so that new houses are developed and built according to the standards.

As far as building materials, even reinforced concrete materials would work, but only if made with the right formula and used correctly. Building materials need to be able to be more resistant to earthquake forces. Some examples include light steel and aluminium. Natural building materials have also become popular-bamboo is being used by some homeowners because it is cheap, easy to get, and easy to use. The kotangan system (half-brick wall/half-bamboo matting) is one of the popular choices among the victims.

FuturArc: So far what percentage of damaged buildings has been repaired?
Munichy: Up to today, less than one percent.

FuturArc: What methods are employed by the government departments and the IAI in relocating earthquake victims? How long will it take to reconstruct to a condition that is similar to the situation before the earthquake?
Munichy: When redeveloping and rebuilding housing in Yogyakarta and Central Java, several factors must be considered: resilience against future earthquakes, health, safety and ease of construction. Besides those factors, availability of resources, such as funds, construction materials, time and labour must also be considered. University studies have indicated that victims should not live in refugee shelters or tents for more than three months. We have made some temporary shelters and healthy refugee tents near the damaged houses. While the complete reconstruction process really depends on available funds, it should take more or less two years.

FuturArc: What lessons have the IAI learned from the reconstruction process to prepare for a future disaster?
Munichy: The application of building safety standards for all types of buildings-residential and other infrastructure-has been the most valuable lesson for all. Using building materials that meet safety standards will minimise building damage if hit by another disaster.

(Taken From:
© Copyright 2006 FuturArc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.

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Friday, 16 March 2007

Lessons Learned

A look at what lessons are being learned-and-applied-in the wake of the May earthquake in Indonesia

by Erwin Maulana and Thor Kerr

On 27 May, just before six o'clock in the morning, about 37 kilometres south of Yogyakarta, a 5.9 magnitude earthquake shook Indonesia's Yogyakarta and Central Java provinces, one of the world's most densely populated regions.

According to a preliminary report from the World Bank, the May 2006 Java earthquake was one of the world's costliest natural disasters in the past ten years, causing nearly 6,000 deaths, tens of thousands of injuries and an estimated US$3.1 billion in total damages. Damaged and destroyed houses account for over half of the total damaged value-the latest estimates from the Indonesian government show that about 330,000 houses were destroyed or badly damaged; another 278,000 suffered light damage.

While the severity of the damage has been blamed principally on the earthquake's relatively shallow depth (11.8 kilometres below the earth's surface), a general failure to properly construct buildings against earthquake forces was a critical factor.

Indonesia is no stranger to earthquake disasters: this earthquake follows the horrific 2004 tsunami; and on 17 July 2006, just six weeks after the May earthquake, another tsunami hit the coast of Java, leading to hundreds of dead and more damage.

Since structural failure was a major contributor to housing damage and human loss, FuturArc has talked to local architects and survivors to find out what building conditions existed before the earthquake and what lessons are being learned and applied to prevent another such tragedy.

A Look to Tradition for Strength

While the earthquake's shallow depth was a major factor in its impact, the overall scale of the damage was made worse by a failure to meet safe building standards and to employ basic earthquake-resistant construction methods. The majority of homes in the area were built with low-quality materials and lacked structural frames and reinforcing pillars. Many of the deaths and injuries occurred when buildings and walls fell on the victims. While the most affected were the poor, damage was not limited to housing. Many public buildings, particularly schools, collapsed, which was also blamed on a failure to enforce building codes

Unfortunately, the government has been slow to offer assistance in reconstructing private houses, leading many homeowners to repair or rebuild their homes either by themselves or with help from the community. Reconstruction in some areas is aided by relief agencies, like the Red Cross Red Crescent.

Bimo Suryanto, who lives in the heavily hit Bantul district in Yogyakarta province, has organised local homeowners to rebuild homes. He says the reconstruction efforts must not only meet basic building standards, but also take into account that the village sits on the fault line. If these homes were built to the same standard as their previous homes, they would again be vulnerable to a future disaster. When local residents saw that modern public buildings also collapsed, they concluded that new homes must not only be earthquake-resistant, but must also be built to minimise personal injury even if they are destroyed, Mr. Suryanto says.

When evaluating reconstruction needs, people looked to the local government for guidance in planning and building. At the time of writing (on 6 August), no government reconstruction aid had been delivered to villagers in the affected regions of Bantul or Klaten. In the absence of government guidance, Mr. Suryanto says many homeowners in his village have started the rebuilding efforts on their own.

Since villagers are rebuilding with extremely limited resources, they are looking for materials and methods that meet fairly simple and straight-forward criteria: they need to be affordable and offer safety, security and basic day-to-day comfort. Given that so much damage and death were caused by collapsing brick walls, homeowners are looking to more traditional building materials, such as wood and bamboo.

Mr. Suryanto's village is one of many throughout the affected region that have restored confidence in bamboo and traditional construction methods. The proof is in the shattered landscape: five-metre-high traditional warehouses and barns made of bamboo and sugarcane leaves are still standing after the earthquake while modern buildings lay in ruins.

The small, dense village of Birit, in Klaten, Central Java is one of many examples. Before the earthquake, Birit, a typical farm workers' village, was home to more than 100 families. Single-storey detached houses of brick and tile occupied tiny sites, creating an abstract patchwork of structures. Now only a handful of those houses are still standing; the rest were reduced to brick rubble and dust during the earthquake. Between houses were alleys of one-to-three metres wide, used by the residents to escape when the earthquake began. Only two people died in Birit because rapid exit was possible from this small, dense village before the weight of tiled roofs and brick walls crashed down upon them

Now, tents have been staked amongst rubble on the foundations of old homes as villagers protect their greatest remaining asset: a concrete slab. Reconstruction works are starting on these foundations with villagers accessing relatives' funds or receiving help from relief agencies

As in Bimo Suryanto's village in Bantul, bamboo has become the structural material of choice in Birit because it is relatively cheap, available and proven to be reliable in earthquakes.

Mr. Sumanto, a Birit resident who lost his house in the earthquake, and relief workers from the foundation Yayasan Tanggul Bencana Indonesia (YTBI) constructed a temporary bamboo house in the village on the foundation of a levelled house in only two days. The 20-square-metre house is constructed of a bamboo frame, woven bamboo walls and ceiling. The roof has three layers, starting with the innermost bamboo ceiling, followed by a plastic sheet and then sugarcane leaves.

YTBI aims to build 1,000 temporary houses in six months with just five staff working in some of the poorest villages of Klanten and Bantul by supplying a basic house design, training, bamboo and other materials while villagers apply their own labour. The materials for each house cost only IDR1.6 million (US$176) and can be delivered to site within four days by suppliers from Central Java. The YTBI houses are expected to be used for up to two years, but the designer Yudhi Kartika Nugraha said the preserved bamboo could last up to five years. This may be necessary if promised reconstruction aid is not forthcoming.

Other homeowners are finding building materials in whatever they can get their hands on Aside from using bamboo, some people are recycling whatever wood framework is in good enough condition from otherwise destroyed houses. Besides using plastic and woven leaves, other roofing materials include recycled debris, clay tiles, zinc and asbestos.

(Taken From:
© Copyright 2006 FuturArc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.

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