When asked about his experience with education growing up, Fernando–a 21 year-old from the Fumacê favela in Realengo, West Zone–said: “I’ve never liked to study. My mom forced me to go to school, but it’s something that I’ve never liked to do. In school, they don’t teach you, they just force you to do things. It’s a method for the masses.”
Fernando’s sentiments are echoed by thousands of children across Rio. He is one of 720 youth from 14 different favelas that have taken part in Agência de Redes para Juventude (Networks for Youth Agency) programs since 2011. Agência provides training to youth More >
With the recent military occupation of the Complexo da Maré, Brazilian and international media have turned their attention to this group of favelas in Rio’s North Zone. Yet Maré and its residents are so often mischaracterized in the same fashion: helpless, desperate and violent. “The notorious Maré shanty town” is, reads an AFP communiqué widely distributed internationally, “a haven for organized crime and one of the city’s most dangerous places.” Local coverage was often no less skewed, with Rio-based O Globo describing it as “one of the most violent regions in the city,” in which, passively, “residents hope for days of peace” following the arrival More >
Book Review: Cidade de Deus–Working with Informalized Mass Housing in Brazil by Marc Angélil and Rainer Hehl
Cidade de Deus–Working with Informalized Mass Housing in Brazil is a 2013 publication by Marc Angélil and Rainer Hehl, in collaboration with Something Fantastic, presenting a researched-based design study by the Master of Advanced Studies in Urban Design program at the ETH Zurich. Providing a case study of City of God, from historical research to an analysis on how CDD (by its Portuguese acronym) developed, from its beginnings as a planned housing project to one of Brazil’s most famous favelas, the book unveils the actual architectural processes and interfaces of the formal/informal relationship in the neighborhood.
The military dictatorship in Brazil began More >
Last week, Solar Cities Solutions visited the greater Rio area to continue their efforts to build biodigesters in up to four favelas prior to the 2014 World Cup. During this visit the team completed the first set of biodigesters in Niterói that will serve a school in one of the communities affected by the tragic landslides of April 2010. Solar Cities Solutions worked on the Niterói site with Architecture for Humanity (who are concurrently constructing the ninety-person day care center the biodigesters will be utilized by), the future head of the school and local environmental engineers and architects.
Biodigesters are an ancient technology, historically More >
Light Serviços de Eletricidade S.A. (Light) has long provided electricity–officially and unofficially–to Rio’s favelas. With the installation of Pacifying Police Units (UPPs) (the police occupation of a number of favelas over the past 5 years) Light began to regularize their services and deal with the historic problem of gatos, as clandestine connections of electricity are known in Rio. Yet increasingly, residents of UPP-occupied favelas complain of monthly bills rising inexplicably to abusive prices, a lack of public illumination, as well as blackouts and failures in the service. RioOnWatch has investigated cases of problems with Light’s electricity service in UPP-occupied favelas, finding worrying More >