The strength of Spirit of the Union team is at the core composed of students and faculty from different backgrounds and institutions in Abu Dhabi. The contest will be integrated into classes throughout the following two years to accommodate the different stages needed for project completion. A variety of backgrounds and disciplines from the Petroleum Institute and Zayed University provide the perfect balance of necessary skills and knowledge to produce a robust design team for the contest. In addition, Team Spirit of the Union will continue to seek and secure involvement from the industry and participation from the community.
The ‘Spirit of the Union’ is a multidisciplinary team proposing a sustainable and environmentally responsible Emirati Solar Decathlon House prototype for the 2018 Solar Decathlon Middle East. The Emirati Solar Decathlon House will be a “gatherer” of renewable energy resources and a positive contributor to the future growth of the UAE urban fabric.
Adapting to the local and regional specificities it will also integrate the particularities of today’s Emirati culture. Through a collaborative process between academics, professional entities, local and international students, the house will be locally designed and produced and will aim at introducing a new Emirati housing typology for the future. The house will be sensitive to UAE ecosystem; providing smart solutions to the regional climate and local weather, while simultaneously being sensitive to the Emirati culture and customs, as well as its inhabitants’ needs.
Their design philosophy draws upon aspects of the Sha’bia House; the UAE first modern housing typology, reinstating particularities that got lost with the adaptation of the western house type, and concurrently accommodating today’s needs and modern lifestyle. Integrating ‘external’ environment within the private house quarter, daily user adaptability, and seasonal versatility are two main guiding concepts in the Emirati Solar Decathlon House design. However, it will not be a building developed solely around high-end technological amenities, but an aesthetic design philosophy home with its users’ inhabitation as a core and prime concern. Technology will not lead how the house will look, but will complement the house aesthetic.
The design development of the house will embrace the latest locally available 21st-century fabrication methods and manufacturing processes as an integral part of its internal and external environment.