An investigation into how garden spaces can be incorporated in low-income housing design.
Aipikor, Esenu Charity
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The urban population in Uganda has been at an all time high, hitting the 17.1% mark in September 2018, based on the latest United Nations estimates, which is slightly above 7.5 million people of the roughly 44 million Ugandans. This number is expected to skyrocket further, since May 2007, where for the first time in history, the rate of population worldwide inhabiting urban centres overtook the rural one. By 2030, some two thirds of the world‘s people will be living in cities, according to UN projections. In developing countries, this is more extreme due to the rural-to-urban migration. The growing urban populations, coupled with dwindling rural agricultural population, sees the food security in urban areas becoming less and less stable. The lifestyle of urban dwellers is also a need to be dealt with, with the need for green areas and greener cities. Between 30 and 60 percent of the urban population in some developing countries live in illegal or informal settlements (Mitlin & Satterthwaite, 2013).Without access to proper income, there arises a problem of food insecurity in cities, especially in slums where the urban poor who can barely afford a proper meal every day struggle to survive. The increasing food insecurity in the city, coupled with spatial constraints present in many Kampala city residences and in slums fuels the need for innovative ways to integrate urban farming spaces in the design of urban homes, particularly in the housing of the urban poor to improve their livelihoods. This research is an investigation into the integration of garden spaces in low-income housing settlements as a strategy to improve the livelihoods of the urban poor through physical adaptation of space for gardening, strengthening of social links in slum neighbourhoods and economic empowerment, and hence come up with recommendations on how to design for home food gardens in Soweto slum, Namuwongo by utilising small spaces, cheap and accessible materials, and provide spaces for community bonding and interaction.