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  • Writer's pictureNicola Smart

Reflecting local culture and green living

One of our recent posts focused on the Ohlen Green Living Community in Vanuatu, part of which is the Ohlen Market Place. Vanuatu is renowned for beautiful nature, fresh produce and a community-focused lifestyle. Although the convenience of modern life, such as a supermarket, exists in Vanuatu, local produce and crafts are commonly sold at the open-air farmers market. It is not just a place to exchange goods, but it is also a place to meet.

Ohlen Market Place is carefully designed to reflect local culture and lifestyle. As part of the Green Living Community, the Market incorporates the vision of environmentally friendly living while maximising the use of local resources. The Market Place architectural style is inspired by local vernacular architecture and will be constructed by the local community. Its A-frame roof design is quite common in South Pacific and, although it reflects simplicity, it can project a dramatic look. The Market has a high-pitched roof and exposed truss to create a sense of openness. Traditional thatch roof, which is ecologically friendly in principle, will be incorporated as a design response to the local climate and social response to preserve heritage. As part of the Ohlen Village Building Program, Partner Housing will set up a local workshop to upskill the local workers to build their own village using traditional construction method. In the long term, the Building Program will generate local jobs, instill a sense of ownership and care for the environment.

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