Author : Daniel Illum-Davis

University : Arkitektskolen Aarhus

Status : BArch, 2012

Title : Housing the Homeless in Westminster

“Don’t try to drive the homeless into a place we find suitable. Help them survive in a place them find suitable” — Daniel Quinn, Author

Based in London, England, the project revolves around creating a transitional accommodation and rehabilitation space for those sleeping rough in the Capital, helping them adjust at their own pace to a way of life away from the streets.

Whilst shelters already exist for the homeless, many feel unable to inhabit them, feeling intimidated and unrepresented, choosing to remain on the streets.

This project takes inspiration from the temporary homeless street structures found in many cities across the world, outlining and using their spatial and aesthetical qualities to create ‘recognisable architecture’ for the end user.

The resulting spaces, flow and order throughout the building are immediately detectable, manifesting itself as a personal and secure space for the homeless, blending the folded, protective wall with the light and weaving interior structure, where they can find their own sanctuary and peace within the blurred boundary between interior and exterior spaces.

It is impossible to describe, or recreate, what it’s like to sleep rough. The cold, the hunger, the fear, the shame. The fact that you don’t know when, or if, it’s ever going to end. I really don’t know how those long-term rough sleepers keep going” — Danny Gardner, Former Rough Sleeper

“It’s not enough to give someone a bed and some food; you need to give them hope to rebuild another life” — James, Rough Sleeper