Casa Mangle is a study project developed for Fundación Granito de Arena, for the community of Curia, located in the pacific coast between what are the last blue crab mangrove areas in Ecuador.
Mangrove ecosystems have been on constant decline through the change in land use and development and urban growth in coastlines. Mangrove deforestation not only affects in the number of species of flora and fauna that perish with the reduction of these ecosystems, such as the blue crab, shrimp and others, but it also affects coastal communities that rely on fishing and harvesting that can no longer continue with their traditional activities and cannot make ends meet. Furthermore, mangrove deforestation plays a huge role in the resilience of these coastal areas to increasing tide levels and storm surges, thus with the reduction of the mangroves, these defenses fail, leaving the communities more exposed to further impact due to climate change.
The purpose of Fundación Granito de Arena and VIVA was to provide the community with a space that would allow for the community to preserve their ecosystem, to learn about the species that rely on the mangroves for their survival and to make others aware of the impact that deforestation can have, and most of all, to engage youth and kids in a positive balance with the ocean through surf and other water activities as a way to preserve the mangroves. Casa Mangle was a community design case study of what can be achieved through architecture as a community catalyst and environmental tool. The project includes surf board storage area, recreational spaces such as decks and walkways for mangrove appreciation, a library area, and community gathering areas.
Curia, Guayas, Ecuador
septiembre 03, 2011