New village models : examining the sustainability of existing realities and hypothetical visions
Lozanovska, Mirjana 2009, New village models : examining the sustainability of existing realities and hypothetical visions, The international journal of environmental, cultural, economic and social sustainability, vol. 5, no. 5, pp. 129-140.
Zavoj is a mountain village in the Republic of Macedonia. While the village has become a site of emigration due to the mass exodus of its inhabitants, new house constructions have appeared. Scattered through deteriorating vernacular dwellings are new houses, and new fragments of houses attached to old houses. These new houses and house-fragments are introduced by emigrants returning to the village temporarily, and not by the remaining local village inhabitants. In the new millennium their number has dramatically increased. Migration has produced an incongruous mixture of architectures giving rise to questions about sustainable development in relation to new constructions in traditional environments? New buildings in the village are symptomatic of a much more universal phenomenon that is transforming vast rural landscapes into loosely urbanized regions. In contrast to this existing reality, a program in the Faculty of Architecture, Ss. Kiril & Metodij University, Skopje, Republic of Macedonia, is exploring alternative visions for the revitalization of the village. Can these offer more sustainable design approaches to the village? This paper examines sustainability in the dialectic between new constructions in existing villages and hypothetical visions for the new village.