Our Man in Banjarmasin
Thank you to everyone who backed Firm Foundation during the first week of our Kickstarter campaign!
About the time we launched the Kickstarter a week ago, Bima Pratama - a talented young architect who is among the originators of the Firm Foundation project concept - was digging in for a month of fieldwork in Banjarmasin.
Bima is stationed in a neighborhood called Sungai Jingah, which our team identified in collaboration with the municipal government of Banjarmasin as the site for Firm Foundation.
It's an area where water is integral to the everyday lives of people who have resided on the banks of the Martapura River for over a hundred years. Bima is getting to know the community as well as documenting the many ways in which people's lives are impacted by water.
Bima just shared with the team his first notes from the field and we're already learning new things about the area that will inform how the project is designed.
Most of the public space in Sungai Jingah, for example, consists of wooden plank paths self-built by residents on piers over the water. What we didn't know, however, is that the sturdy timber used to build the paths – harvested from the ulin tree – is scarcer today than before because of deforestation, and so it's becoming more and more expensive for residents to maintain the paths.
For the next month, Bima will spend almost every day in Sungai Jingah learning about the community. So, as our ambassador to the neighborhood, Bima is laying the groundwork for our workshops this summer!
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