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Refuge ground

Lambert David

Unbuilt architecture: saving shore in Bangladesh.


"Refuge ground" is an example of unbuilt architecture, designed by David Lambert and transformed in a short explicative video, with the help of motion designer Margot Merandon.
The project starts from a projection: In 2023 Bangladesh could (or, better) will be flooded with salt water; in order to save the coast and the soil, Bangladeshi people would need to tame this upcoming transformation.

David Lambert quote an article appeared in May 2017, saying "Hurricane Mora hits […] Bangladesh, with winds of up to 84 mph damaging thousands of homes and forcing the evacuation of 450, 000 people […] The meteorological department warned people against a tide that could raise sea levels by up to 1.7 meters in several coastal districts in Bangladesh". How would be possible to channel this much-needed transformation?

What Lambert proposes is to use electrodialysis technique to separate salt from water, through a continuous electrical current. Thus, Bangladeshis could build a new ground by extracting salt from seawater, pervasive in most parts of the country. This desalination technique, already used today in the Middle East, would transform the brine (obtained through electrodialysis) into a construction material.

"The sodium chloride present in the water passes from a disordered liquid state to an ordered rigid material," he explains. "Thereby, salt, once responsible for the biotic transformation of Bangladesh and the disappearance of good soil, is being used in the development of an artificial, hybrid nature of architectural elements and rocks salt. A new refuge ground takes shape above seawater, by agglomeration of crystalline salt."

The short video, made for a broader audience, is mostly made by a simple, yet effective, explanation of what electrodialysis means and how could transform the life and the aspect of the people and the coasts. The renderings, resembling more an illustration, than an abstract idea of the place, adapt Lambert’s project to the aesthetics and the tradition of the country.

Authors icon Credits

Mentioned project: Refuge Ground (2017, unbuilt)
Project location: Bangladesh
Motion designer: Margot Merandon

France 2018
Duration: 1'37"