Contributing Monkie G Living Staff Monkies
Published on August 17, 2008
When Brad Pitt engaged 14 of the world’s leading architects to submit designs for his Make It Right project to rebuild New Orleans, he requested a strict standard of sustainability and practicality.
Mixing local designers from New Orleans with various national and international firms, Pitt aimed to create smart urban planning that incorporated a modern feel while maintaining the spirit of the city’s culturally rich Lower 9th Ward.
From the Make It Right site: “MIR’s goal is to join the history of this tradition with creative new architectural solutions mindful of environmental and personal safety concerns in order to encourage both the evolution of aesthetic distinctiveness and the conscientious awareness of natural surroundings.”
Design inspiration came from all areas of the globe, including local New Orleans housing styles like the Shotgun, the Camelback and the Creole Cottage. Among the architects commissioned are London’s Adjaye Architects, Santa Monica, California-based Morphosis, MVRDV of Rotterdam Holland, Tokyo’s Shigeru Ban Architects and New Orleans’ own Eskew Dumez Ripple.
“The MIR team produced a set of guidelines for the houses that set metrics for the final design to insure that the specific goals of the MIR organizations were met. The team is also using Cradle to Cradle thinking to guide and inspire design and materials selection for new homes in the Lower 9th Ward.”
Emphasizing open porches to accommodate the city’s climate as well as energy efficient solar heating, lighting and water resistance, the designs are uniquely adapted to each of the program’s clients and enormously varied in style. The house designed by Morphosis, for example, can float and features a large roof to provide immense shade, while Adjaye provided a stacked structure with a porch on top. All houses are required to be elevated five feet from the ground to safeguard them from floods.
Make It Right hopes to begin building this spring and have 150 houses finished by fall. Until then, we can only feast our eager eyes on these incredible designs.
Brad Pitt video talking about the Make It Right Project.
Larry King Interviews Brad Pitt about his New Orleans Make It Right Foundation.