Khondaker Hasibul Kabir and Suhailey Farzana, teacher and alumna respectively of the Department of Architecture under the School of Architecture and Design of BRAC University have won the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, 2022, which was announced on 22 September 2022.
They designed the project “Urban River Space”, one of the two entries from Bangladesh which are among six award winners selected out of 463 projects nominated for the 15th Award cycle (2020-2022).
The project started off through the rejuvenation of four kilometers of the shore of the Nabaganga river in Jhenaidah and cleaning up access to it through constant community participation and appropriation and substantial involvement of women, marginalized groups and local workforce. Locally available materials such as brick and concrete were used in the simple, contextual designs, all built by local builders and masons; the site-specific projects retain all existing trees and vegetation.
This initiative to transform the town with a community driven approach led to an attractive and accessible multifunctional public space with access to the river through ghats, pedestrian pathways, gardens, and cultural facilities that are valued by Jhenaidah’s diverse communities. The project not only provides the residents with the possibility of using the water, but also takes up environmental efforts to accentuate the biodiversity in the river.
Public ghat along the Nabaganga river in the city of Jhenaidah.