The Tropical Town is a package of innovative technologies and blueprint plans, environmental principles, supported by capacity building techniques. The package is not a master plan or recipe, but designed to seed the development of environmentally sustainable, socially economically resilient settlements over time. At the centre of this project is an incremental housing type named Rubah, or Rumah Tambah (‘expandable house’ in Bahasa Indonesia).
The Tropical Town project was developed at the Singapore-ETH Centre’s Future Cities Laboratory (FCL), with the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Indonesia, School of Design and Environment, National University of Singapore, the municipal planning department (BAPPEDA) in Batam, the Dutch/Indonesian architectural firm, SHAU, and the NGO KRUPUC (Knowledge for Rural and Urban Projects Under Construction). CoReSing recently joined this design team with a focus on materiality and construction.
The project was developed for the island of Batam, Indonesia. Batam functions as a laboratory where the various technical, social, ecological and design principles are explored and prototyped. The Tropical Town project is intended to be ‘scaleable’ and implemented in similar urbanizing regions throughout tropical Southeast Asia. Jakarta could be the first urban testbed for the Tropical Town Project.