The project for a religious and secular complex in the village of Dandaji promotes economic growth in the region through innovation in environmental technologies. The proposed new mosque as well as the restoration of an existing house of worship are accordingly conceived as test beds for sustainable research, exploring new techniques pertaining to the use of renewable resources – energy for heating and cooling, rainwater retention, temperature control, daylight, and natural ventilation. At the core of the scheme is the intention to establish a careful balance between the natural and fabricated realm – an objective most clearly expressed in the project’s landscape strategy, which aims to integrate the buildings into their natural setting.
The jury greatly appreciated the project’s reuse of an existing structure and close engagement with the social and built fabric of the village; and ultimately felt that the project was both an intelligent reinterpretation of tradition and very much at home in the context. The believable depictions of life in the project were a further strength. The combination of traditional and new forms as well as techniques allows the possibility of maintaining knowledge through construction, integrates the passive climate control of traditional massive, cross ventilated structures, and engages in a discourse on the history of the site and on the project’s role in bringing a community together.