Community Number Three, Tema

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Right from the beginning of my schooling in Architecture I have been intrigued by the concept of planned environments, where architects and planners design ideal environments for the day to day activities of humans. There have been many ideas and proposals, from the concept of the Garden City by Ebenezer Howard (1898), the neighbourhood unit, Clarence Peny (1929), The Broadacre City Plan (Frank Ilyod Wright (1932), The City of Tomorrow (Le Corbusier), The Radburn Principle and the Dynamic City (Constantinos Doxiadis) to name a few. Many of the proposals are mere utopias but a few have actually been built, Letchworth (Garden City Principle, Britain) and the town of Radburn (U.S.A.). The town of Tema in Ghana was also built from the scratch with modern planning principles by C.A. Doxiadia and his firm of consultants. It has existed for over 30 years now and therefore serves as a good yardstick to access the workings of a planned environment. Many problems exist within the town and a part aim of this study is to find out why they should exist in such a planned town. Special emphasis will be placed on the residential environment. A proposal for an action plan to arrest the negative trends in the town will be made and finally the design of one of the communities’ which at present have not been developed. The objectives are therefore three-fold. A. Access the workability of the planned environment B. Arrest the existing trends in Tema (with special emphasis on the residential sector) ensure its successful completion and smooth functioning C. The detailed design of one residential district in the town, keeping in mind the present economic conditions in the country. The study will be carried out through 1. studying the master plans, concepts and house types of the original planners 2. Field surveys, interviews, visual observation, sketches and photographs. Limitations (with respect to the design of the community) 1. Lack of information from the companies who own land in the community to be designed, final decisions had not yet been made on the type of income groups, house types and the actual number of workers to be provided for. 2. The inability to interview the actual users of the community as at this initial stage they are still unknown until the community is built.
A thesis submitted to the Board of Postgraduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Postgraduate Diploma in Architecture, 1988