• Street lamp made of recycled metal, Cairo Street lamp made of recycled metal, Cairo, © Technisches Museum Wien
Everyday Life - directions for use
The urban future

Street lamp made of recycled metal, Cairo


No garbage. But a city instead.

There is a district of Cairo called Mokattam where some 60,000 garbage collectors live. They make sure that Cairo with its eight million inhabitants stays clean. Mokattam emerged as an ‘informal settlement’. Its residents are forced to organise most of their living conditions themselves. Using materials reclaimed from the refuse. Lamps are made out of recycled materials and operated using solar power to create sustainable street lighting.
Refuse on the streets of Cairo is collected by hand. It is then sorted and recycled in Mokattam, giving rise to an entire industry. The Zabbaleen (‘refuse collectors’) help ensure the survival of the community as a whole.

A zero energy district? By 2030 the inhabitants of Mokattam want to be self-sufficient by using renewable energies. The aim: to live in an ‘eco-district’. At present the electricity grid breaks down on a regular basis.

Street lamp, metal and aluminium, 2016
Association for the Protection of the Environment – ape / LOCUS Foundation

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