|dc.description.abstract||Critical Regionalism is a term that came about during the early 1980’s. It deals with designing architecture based on specific and unique characteristics of a region including geographical, economical, and cultural conditions. It does not simply stick to traditional means of design, or copy what exists in the region, but learns from it and reapplies it in a contemporary or up to date manner. This paper looks at these conditions in The Bahamas, and explores a critical regionalist approach for architecture in The Bahamas moving forward.
Literary research was done on authorities of critical regionalism. In 1981 Alexander Tzonis and Liane Lefaivre introduced the term. Although there may be variations between different authors’ ideas, key concepts remain the same – avoiding homogeneous designs worldwide, and creating architecture best suited for its location. Further research included traveling to islands within the country, conducting interviews with architects and artists, and examination of hypothesis forming surveys. Based on this, the initial assertion for this paper – that there is a lack of contemporary architecture in The Bahamas – was further substantiated.
Due to the large tourism industry, developments within the country put primary focus on appealing to tourists with secondary emphasis placed on the community. This should be reversed. Additionally, design of a building should not simply be about aesthetics but take into consideration the comfort of its users. This can best be achieved by understanding and responding to the region and its culture, while applying contemporary methods such as modern building techniques and materials||en_US