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Reviving Khargerd Adobe Village
Khaaf, Iran
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Location:
Khaaf, Iran
Category:
urban planning
Phase:
construction preparation
Updated:
6 January 2023
Khaf region, of which Khargerd is a small part, has become known as "a city in the hands of the wind" as it is always exposed to local winds. The responsive adobe context of this village is going to disappear according to lack of awareness about its values. This project tries to rotate this destructive process into a sustainable way of urban development by respecting and preserving the vernacular values. 
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Introduction
The idea of this project was shaped by our attendance in voluntary documentation of the Ghyathia School workshop in September 2022, in Khargerd. This is one of the greatest historical Timurid heritage of Iran. While working in this school which is the only remarkable potential of this village by the public, and even the professional, we noticed the worthiness of responsive vernacular architecture of this region that has used the local wind energy to provide urban resiliency of this area for years. The famous 120-day Sistan wind refresh the region's excruciating heat. Traditional windmills or Asbads were built based on the climatic conditions, to flour wheat and make bread using these winds. Numerous short adobe wind catchers provide a pleasant indoor air quality for residents, while presenting an eye-catching landscape. The beautiful unique adobe context of this village is going to be destroyed in modern construction, due to lack of knowledge about its values. Talking to some of the residents of adobe context of the village we find out their needs to renovate their houses. This project aims to preserve the adobe context of Khargerd, while improving living conditions in two phases. In the first phase it is considered to refurbish one of the adobe houses, and also the only Ecotourism Residence of the village. In the second phase the two remains of Aasbads of Khargerd, and also their nearby park will be reused.
Old Asbads of Khargerd Village, 1970s, These windmills use the power of the wind to turn the millstones and grind the wheat into flour.

image: Yaqoob Daneshdoust | © all rights reserved
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Impact
Cooperating with local people, and indicating the richness of their vernacular context can be a key to increase self-esteem of the villagers while preserving their historical heritage. This also can lead to improving their financial situations by attracting tourists. 
Reusing the old windmills can preserve this valuable sample of historic architecture. They represent a kind of responsive and passive strategy of using wind energy, a low-tech beautiful turbine which is made of natural materials and works well for years. This must be preserved for the next generations. The kids park near old Aasbad, can be an opportunity for local people, their children, and visitors to talk, feel and think more about the way of living by nature. 
sdgs
Core team

Gel Studio is a sustainable design studio at Shiraz, focusing on Vernacular Architecture, Passive Design and Architecture for Humanity. It has 2 fixed members and in every projects according to its needs, some members added to this team. In this project we have a nice chance to cooperate by a range of professionals, university students also lovely people of Khargerd village.
Aida Zare M: Co-Founder of Gel Studio
1984, Shiraz, Iran, Architect and University Lecturer.
Sobhan Zare M: Co-Founder of Gel Studio
1988, Iran. Master of Architecture. Working in the different fields of architecture, art and graphic designing.
Anis Darvishi
Master of Restoration of Historical Buildings and Context. Her childhood was marked by historical monuments in Khorasan regions. Since 2015, she works on Windmills. 
Amir Ashna, Parisa Talepour, and Fateme Shakib 
The talented interior architecture students of Shiraz University of Arts, they are interested and work on passive design, vernacular architecture, and hands on experiences.

Narjes Delavari, M.A of Architecture, Qavam al-din Shirazi is her favorite Iranian classic architect.

Maedeh Karimi, Master of urban design, Interest in architecture design, and find solutions in Urbanism and mapping.

Maryam Shouride, master of Iranian Architecture studies is also with us. 

Our core team members has a nice diversity of professionals, university students and local people.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Image gallery
Valuable and fragile adobe context of Khargerd village.

image: sObhan zAre | © all rights reserved
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Incompatible construction is going to destroy the integrity of this context.

image: sObhan zAre | © all rights reserved
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Ghiathiya school of Khargerd, The masterpiece of Iranian architecture in Timurid dynasty.

image: sObhan zAre | © all rights reserved
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The yard of Ghiathiya school of Khargerd.

image: sObhan zAre | © all rights reserved
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Gardens of Khargerd village which are located behinde the Ghiathiya school.

image: sObhan zAre | © all rights reserved
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Kaniz House. As the first step, we want to help Kaniz to retouch the clay plaster of her house, also refurbish the destroyed wind catchers of it.

image: sObhan zAre | © all rights reserved
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Kaniz House. She still lives in this adobe house, and decided to renovate it.

image: sObhan zAre | © all rights reserved
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Outdoor clay plasters need to be repaired and retouched.

image: sObhan zAre | © all rights reserved
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Windcatchers of this house must restore and revive.

image: sObhan zAre | © all rights reserved
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Whole view to Ghiaythia Residency. The only tourist residency of the Khargerd village.

image: Aida Zare | © all rights reserved
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Ghiathiya tourist residency.

image: sObhan zAre | © all rights reserved
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Ghyathia residency indoor spaces.

image: Maryam Shoorideh | © all rights reserved
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Using inappropriate materials in reconstruction of the Ghiathiya residency.

image: Maryam Shoorideh | © all rights reserved
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Blocking view to Ghiathiya school by chillers. Using local windcatchers could be the best solution to provide cooling.

image: Aida Zare | © all rights reserved
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Disorganized Kitchen of the Ghiathiya residency. It is significant to design responsive interior spaces for better services.

image: Maryam Shoorideh | © all rights reserved
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"Tanoor Khaneh", Attractive place for baking bread in Ghiathiya residency, is going to be demolished.

image: Maryam Shoorideh | © all rights reserved
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Interior space and clayey oven of "Tanoor khane" need to repair for baking bread.

image: Maryam Shoorideh | © all rights reserved
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The remaining two asbads of Khargerd village.

image: Anis Darvishi | © all rights reserved
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The park of the village, and its nearby Aasbad.

image: Anis Darvishi | © all rights reserved
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Asbads need to be repaired and the park nearby can change to a place for commemoration 120 days wind in Khargerd village.

image: Anis Darvishi | © all rights reserved
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Technical drawings
A proposal for conservation of historic context of Khargerd village in two phases.

image: Gel Studio | © all rights reserved
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First phase of this master plan: Restoration program of Kaniz house.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Outdoor plastering of this house needs hands-on experience of volunteers.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Current situation of wind catchers; they still can provide thermal comfort in summer, but they need to be reused.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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The designed details to improve wind catchers function.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Location and site analyze of Ghyathia Residency.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Natural ventilation and view of each room must improve.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Reconstruction and activating the old bakery of this residency would be very effective in attracting tourist and providing local high quality breads.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Current plan of Ghyathia residency.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Zoning proposal for Ghyathia Residency according to its needs in service and hygiene.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Elevation of Ghyathia residency; local construction techniques and material are considered in reusing this building and its landscape.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Second phase of this master plan: The two remaining windmills must be reconstructed.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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This windmill can work again and flour the wheat for baking local breads.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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The other windmill which is located near a park, needs reconstruction.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Reconstruction of this windmill can provide a specific theme for the kids' park.

image: gel studio | © all rights reserved
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Help bring our project to life!

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Help bring our project to life!
Where are we now
Participating in documentation of the Ghyathia School, led us to perceive the value of adobe context of the Khargerd. We provide a diverse, passionate team of professionals. This helps us to make a master plan for reviving the destroyed context of the village in two phases.
Our first step is programming a voluntary workshop to renovate the clay plaster and 20 wind catchers of one adobe house, in May 2023. Field surveys, pathology, and cost estimation have been done by our team. Accommodation of volunteers would be free Instead of providing a reconstruction plan for the only ecotourism residence of the village.
An indication of our team’s capacity:
45% funding already raised
100% expertise already found
20% materials / equipment already found
80% builders already found
Finance: € 3,396
Our team is planning a volunteer workshop to renovate an adobe house, cooperating with her owner and other villagers. This will be very effective to encourage the other residents to preserve and renovate their houses. We also design reconstruction of the ecotourism residence by using local material and techniques, trying to display a nice example of adaptive reuse and respecting user’s needs. The costs of this section will be paid by the employer. This would help the residents, perceive the values of their vernacular architecture, prevent context distortion, develop sustainable tourism and improve people's living conditions. The needed budget of this phase is estimated around 3400 €. 
  • Kaniz House: 900 m2 Thatch
1,530
  • Kaniz House: Renovation of 20 windcatchers
220
  • Kaniz House: Transportation for 15 voluanteers
163
  • Kaniz House: Food for 15 volunteers for 15 days
990
  • Residency: Transportation for 5 volunteers-3 times
163
  • Residency: Foods for 5 volunteers
330
Help bring our project to life!
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