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Warka Water / Architecture and Vision

Warka Water  – Description of Architecture and Vision.

Warka Water  – Description of Architecture and Vision.

‘Warka Water’ is an alternative water source for rural populations that face challenges in accessing drinkable water. It is first and foremost an architecture project. A vertical structure designed to harvest potable water from the atmosphere, Warka Water collects rain and harvests fog and dew, with the objective of providing an average of 100 L of drinking water every day. Built with simple tools, and using a passive system to collect water from the atmosphere, Warka Water is designed to be owned and operated by the villagers. When a small rural community adopts Warka Water, it can lead to impactful change in a variety of areas, including the community’s education, economy, society, and agriculture, as well as impacting the environment. A project pilot, the version n. 3, was finally installed in a rural village in south Ethiopa, Dorze, on May 2015.

Courtesy of Architecture and Vision
Courtesy of Architecture and Vision

Warka Water relies only on natural phenomena such us gravity, condensation & evaporation and doesn’t require electrical power.  The tower not only provides a fundamental resource for life – water – but also creates a social place for the community, where people can gather under the shade of its canopy for education and public meetings.

Warka Water is designed to be easily transported also where infrastructure are limited. The tower is modular and the elements join together with a simple technique.The size of each module is small enough to be transported even by foot climbing up to steep pathways to remote places where no means of transportation can reach.

Courtesy of Architecture and Vision
Courtesy of Architecture and Vision

We believe that installing the Warka tower in remote villages can lead to numerous impactful initiatives:

  • Education: Women and children can engage in productive activities such as care, education and crafts that can lead to self-sufficiency.
  • Economy: Manufacturing the Warka tower locally and sourcing indigenous materials can create jobs and boost the local economy.
  • Society: The Warka tower’s canopy creates a gathering place for the community.
  • Agriculture: Water produced by the Warka tower can be used for irrigation and farming.
  • Environment: the water management training program can introduce the principles of permaculture.
  • Technology: Future developments include a shared internet connection point for rural villages, which can connect the isolated communities and bring valuable real-time information (e.g., weather forecast, market prices of crops).
Warka Water
Warka Water

Warka Water is designed for autonomous distribution and scaling. The tower can be easily built and maintained by the local communities using simple tools. The tower can be also maintained without using special parts or heavy machinery. With training and guidance, the locals can easily build and maintain the Warka tower. This local know-how can then be transferred to surrounding communities, with villagers helping install other towers in the area and creating an economy based on the assembly and maintenance of the towers. This can expedite the scaling of Warka Water in the region. Following the prototype development and testing phases, we intend to start manufacturing the Warka on a large scale, which can bring the material’s cost down to $1000 per tower significantly less than other water relief options available.

Courtesy of Architecture and Vision
Courtesy of Architecture and Vision

As part of the Warka Water project, we will also plant a new Warka tree next to each Warka tower. The growth of the sapling will be supported by the water generated by the Warka towers as well as the dedicated team from the local community that maintains the tower. With time, the new tree will not only counterbalance the negative effects of increasing deforestation, but also will help create a better environment for the Warka tower to function. The humidity created by the tree will facilitate the water production of Warka Water.

Warka Water 03
Warka Water 03

Key details of Warka Water 3.2 : Daily water collection: 13 to 26 gallons (50 to 100 L), annual average. Water tank storage: 800 gallons (3000 L). Construction: 10 days, 10 people (by hand, no electrical power machinery required). Assembly: 2 hours, 10 people. Weight: 176 pounds (80 kg). Materials: Bamboo, hemp, metal pins, bio-plastic. Dimensions: Height 31ft (9.5 m) – Footprint Ø 12 ft (3,7 m). Surface Area: Mesh 323 sq ft (30 sq. m). Collector: 87 sq ft (8.1 sq. m). Canopy: Ø 32 ft (10 m). Cost: ~ $1,000 (production in Ethiopia). Maintenance: easy to be maintained, cleaned and repaired.

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