the results of the Young Egyptian Architects Competition 2021 Third prize ALIVE


Location: Helwan
Team: Moataz Mohamed Hassanein - Israa Mohamed Abdel Fattah - Fatima Wafeeq Zakaria - Moamena Mohamed Mahmoud - Maram Ali Mohamed


     Humans Health is the extent of an individual’s continuing physical, emotional, mental, and social ability to cope with his or her environment. In the last centuries due to human actions, there has been a lot of climatic changes, pollution, diseases that lead to the emersion of epidemics and recently the appearance of the pandemic Covid-19 that made radical changes to our lives as humans.

     Our vision is to create a project to be a turning point in Egypt that includes different activities that can be practiced comfortably and to achieve flexibility within small spaces in coronavirus era.

     The aim of our project design is to create environments that stimulates the mind in order to provide pleasure, creativity, relaxation and enjoyment. 

              Determination of the reasons of site selection and putting social and environmental studies into consideration while developing the project.  

     The criteria on which the site was selected was the extent of the Coronavirus Spread, the availability of building materials, the type of users, the place identity, and its connectivity.

Therefore, we chose Cairo as it was Egypt’s most infected cities and because being the largest in population, thus it needs a new prototype design that responds to the new health and climate challenges.


Inside Cairo we chose Helwan because it was Cairo’s most infected areas and due to factories air pollution and the spread of respiratory diseases, there is a need for new design strategies that put in mind air purification and treatments to decrease pollution.

     The site lies on Omar Ibn Abd El-Aziz main road in Helwan District branched from the Nile Corniche close to Rokn Farouk.

     The immune system in human beings  defends our bodies through a series of defenses. Our designing approach uses the same technique to make home the people’s immune. When we start looking at the building as a human being, we will start considering that it also has immune system that decides how it will resist diseases or control viruses and infections. Just like the immune system of the human, the building immune system has three main layers of defense; barriers, innate, and adaptive layers.

The program encourages the enhancement of the role of healthy home and working from it. The program includes private and semiprivate zones. Usual spaces such as living, dining, and bedrooms. Added spaces such as work space, working-out space (Gym), school from home, sterilization space before entering the home, kids’ area ,and isolation zone.

Interior spaces are designed to maintain several different activities during the day. As parts of the living room space can be turned into isolation part, other can be closed and opened into a work space. Multipurpose furniture are introduced in the interior design in order to provide additional spaces in small residential units.

Using passive systems in our project such as natural illumination, indoor air filtering and purification, thermal comfort and natural ventilation. Spreading green areas through the building to achieve higher air quality and environment, improving the mental and physical health.

Using CSEB material as the building material in the  external walls. It simulates human skin by purifying the air. This is a double skin for the building which reduces the thermal loads. CSEB are natural materials, it is soil, raw or stabilized, which is slightly moistened, poured into a steel press (with or without stabilizer) and then compressed either with a manual or motorized press.

Returning to nature. All challenges that face human kind is due to man’s actions towards nature, as this pandemic will not be the end. Our world will continue facing unpredictable challenges that differ in their nature and effect.

Protecting human’s health should be a crucial task during these challenges. In order to do so, a man’s home, which is considered to be  the cell, shelter and sanctuary ,should provide the optimum protection, to be fully adaptable to these endless changes. It should be able to allow inhabitants to practice all their activities comfortably. To be fully equipped with all necessities that makes life healthier and easier. To be more connected to nature through applying interior design strategies that enhances the human’s relation with nature like Biophilia and so on. 

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