So much disturbing news from Israel and Palestine in the last two weeks has left me completely exasperated, and I’m sure our readers can relate. Thankfully NPR gives us a brief respite with this great story of a Nader Khalili-styled dome home that a young Palestinian firm recently completed in Jericho.
Until the girls were abducted, I didn’t know much about Burkina Faso. And I didn’t think I wanted to know more until I stumbled upon Tiébélé, a village full of the most elaborately-painted earthen homes and mausoleums. Rita Willaert has a treasure trove of images on her flickr page. Hit the jump to see just a […]
The round Freedom Farm house in Egypt reminds us why a world without AirBnB’s (mostly) affordable nightly rentals around the globe would be so much less wonderful. And who will be the next administrative target? Couchsurfing? Will it be illegal to let a gal crash in your cave for less than 29 days?
Just two hour’s drive east of Dubai, the Al Hayl Fort or Palace paints a succinct picture of Emirati life before artificial islands and enormous skyscrapers became “normal.” Located in a wadi among the Hajar mountains, the remarkable earthen compound was built in 1932 by then ruler of Fujairah Sheikh Abdullah Bin Hamdan. It’s a […]
Turn to the ancients for a green building technique that lets you play like a child. Mesopotamian mud bricks still do the job, for free. Mesopotamia was the ancient collective of settlements tracing the Tigris–Euphrates river basin. It spanned modern Iraq, northeastern Syria, southeastern Turkey and smaller parts of Iran. Modern school kids learn this […]
A Nader Khalili-inspired earthen eco resort in southern Oman designed by SSH International won first prize in the Future Projects – Leisure led development category of this year’s World Architecture Festival. The Kuwait-based firm sought to satisfy three main requirements in this prototype for one of the Gulf’s largest developers, who aims to develop 1 […]
Ghadamès is one of the oldest habitable medinas in the Sahara, and it is made almost entirely out of mud. Built in the seventh century and listed as a UNESCO world heritage site in 1986, this clustered clay settlement in Libya epitomizes everything that makes earth architecture so worthwhile. In the summer, according to the locals, […]
Recently I made a tiny film clip to raise awareness about the pollution surrounding the Giza Pyramids. In the comment section of that post, one of my colleagues quipped that Egypt’s newly empowered islamists would probably destroy the iconic Pharaonic structures. He was perhaps responding to a rumor that was circulating on social media at […]
Who was Hassan Fathy, the earth based architect who inspired the Middle East? Exactly forty years ago, Hassan Fathy published his groundbreaking book on community-inspired mud architecture in Egypt. To mark his book’s 40th anniversary and commemorate his green legacy, we spoke to Salma Samar Damluji who worked with Fathy in Cairo in 1975 and […]
Iraqi architect Salma Samar Damluji has won the ‘Global Award for Sustainable Architecture’ for her mud-brick renovation work in Yemen Mud. Muck. Dirt. Clay. Earth. Call it what you like – it’s the stuff of life and also of sustainable architecture. From the stunning mud mosque of Djenne in Mali to the clay tower homes […]
Bringing the merits and techniques of earth architecture to those unable to travel to the California Institute of Earth Architecture founded by Nader Khalili in 1986 was always the internationally-renowned architect’s priority, and it finally came to fruition in 2011 at the first six-day onsite International Workshop in Australia. Now Hooman Fazly and Robert Gordon […]
This beautifully-restored adobe granary in Tunisia keeps food cool without any kind of mechanical intervention. The benefits of earth architecture have been well-documented on Green Prophet, so we were very excited to discover these wonderful adobe granaries called Ksar (Ksour is plural) on our Tunisian journey. Possibly built as early as the 12th century by […]
Earth-loving kibbutzniks applied their green building techniques to the luxury Waldorf-Astoria hotel in Jerusalem. Residents of the Neot Semadar Kibbutz in Israel’s Negev desert have been constructing green buildings for decades, but they’ve never operated beyond their own turf – until now. Tasked with resurrecting Jerusalem’s Palace hotel as the 223 room Waldorf-Astoria, world-renowned Turkish […]
All suited to the Middle East climate and budget, here are 6 green buildings that just about anyone can build without a mortgage. People often say of green building projects that they aren’t affordable. This is true if you’re shooting to live in a glittering LEED certified urban high rise in Dubai or Saudi Arabia, […]
Designed by Hassan Fathy, the Akil Sami House in Egypt is a fairly recent example of earth architecture that is both beautiful and functional. If the architecture mentor is successful, his or her student will first absorb and then build upon their lessons until they eventually supersede the original teachings with new knowledge. Certainly this […]
A hastily constructed building in Israel designed in 1972 seemed like a good idea at a time, but now it has evolved into a bizarre eyesore and a sanctuary for the country’s Orthodox Jews. We’ve seen many funky buildings on Green Prophet, including Moshe Safdie’s famous Habitat ’67 and beehive shaped architecture in Syria, but the […]
If Hassan Fathy is the father of sustainable architecture, then Nader Khalili must be his close cousin.
Anyone who is interested to transition to a more sustainable way of life will benefit from Kibbutz Lotan’s comprehensive eco-guide app. Many socially and environmentally conscious citizens dream about leaving the grid for good and getting back in touch with nature, but the general lack of sustainable infrastructure and available information in the Middle East […]
Find out what it takes to build your home and neighborhood, and then find out about the latest developments in earth architecture. Which is better? You be the judge. Most people agree that having shelter is one of the most fundamental human needs, but for more privileged communities around the globe, a basic necessity has […]
How do the Syrian beehive-shaped houses made out of mud manage to stay so cool in extreme desert conditions? As war and conflict tear through Syria, we take a look at the ancient earthen beehive-shaped houses on the edge of the country which have been wowing visitors for centuries. We have covered these amazing traditional […]
This beautiful home has loads of secret hiding spots and stays cool in the desert heat. Traditionally, Arabic homes huddle together in order to create shade. This is a great technique to keep desert buildings nice and cool, but it’s not so great for foiling peeping Toms and Tamis. AGi Architects struck the perfect balance […]
South African architects chose mud as the main building material for an $8.36 million Islamic Research Institute project in Timbuktu. Using the name Timbuktu in a phrase denotes a sense of something that is far, far away. And it is. Located near the Niger River Delta in Mali, Timbuktu is the gateway to the vast […]