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The COVID-19 pandemic has redefined the way we see our world and how we interact with it on a day to day basis. The novel Coronavirus has shown no discrimination to age, sex, race and or nationality ravaging through 213 countries and claiming innumerable human lives. As the world we know slowly recovers from this global pandemic, it has become paramount to re-assess and revise our existing societal practices that have and will give rise to future novel-influenza strains.
Scientists and researchers have voiced widespread acknowledgement of wet-markets in developing nations being a point of origin for these types of novel-influenza strains. These wet-markets are a prevalent commercial typology in Western and Northern African nations as well as East Asia and South East Asia. These markets play an integral role in providing affordable and accessible food security for the most vulnerable communities, often small and remote.
The following proposal looks at a playful exploration for future wet-market design in Nigeria. The proposal attempts to balance the need for reform with careful respect to the importance of wet-markets for local economies, food security and socio-cultural significance.
The Epe Fish Market is a women's only fresh food market located in Epe, Nigeria. The market is home to over 3000 individual business owners and is a traditional open air wet market common to the region. The market is an integral element to the local and extended community of Epe. Consumers on average travel over an 1Hr to access the markets goods which range from seafood, vegetables, as well as exotic bushmeat and lizards.
The project re-imagines bubble-wrap, a common household object, as form and organizing framework to counter the typically fragmented, makeshift and primitive wet-markets found in developing nations.
An elevated platform composed of locally harvested bamboo creates an accessible, and interconnected market space. Hardened bio-plastic bubbles are organized in a simple grid system with each bubble functioning as a contained, self sanitizing market stall. Clusters of these bubbles are segregated by food groups to minimize cross-contamination. The market space is also outfitted by a boat dock to create sea connection and encourage fresh to market goods. Relief spaces are also provided within the wet-market to provide a moment of respite as well as a drop-off and a keep fresh storage area to further avoid mixing of food groups and goods. Lastly, these various elements are overseen by a central watch tower that functions as an administrative space to ensure adherence to cross-contamination guidelines and orderly form of the market.
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