On the shores of São Francisco River, in the dry Northeast region of Brazil, the Camurupim project is an attempt to regroup the local population around a services core to make community functioning easier and to improve the precarious situation of peasants. Though at first the government supported the initiative, as part of a strategy for territorial development, political instability prevented the project from being carried to term.
Instead of designing a closed urban plan, Lina Bo Bardi simply mediated in a process that was to be developed by the community members. She studied their needs and aspirations through surveys and field work, and designed technical solutions combining standardization and self-build methods. Four hundred circular plots, tangent to one another, are distributed organically following the contour lines on a hill crowned by a building of community services. Inside each circle, the geometry is orthogonal, thus allowing serial construction by means of prefab panels of wood and mud. In this way, local and traditional resources are used, but the process is optimized by making dimensions equal and standardizing the building elements.