Rebuilding Project gets Milestone funded to set Living Ball rolling post-Haiyan

The Leapfrog Project, initiated by architect Lira Luis to help Tacloban rebuild with resilience and serve as model of post-disaster reconstruction reached its first milestone funding via crowdfunding.


Chicago, IL — In the aftermath of super Typhoon Haiyan that devastated huge parts of Central Philippines, a post-disaster rehabilitation program is set to take on the enormous task of rebuilding. The Leapfrog Project, initiated by Filipino-American architect Lira Luis, is now organized to respond to the call of rebuilding. It rallies a number of local (Filipino professionals from the WorkLand M&E Institute, Inc., University of the Philippines, National Housing Authority, United Architects of the Philippines, Social Project.PH, Philippine government agencies) and international (professionals from Bionic City, The Caritas Project, OREM Foundation, and the American Institute of Architects (AIA) including graduates from Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin) partners to collaborate and team up for the noble mission of helping Tacloban rebuild with resilience and serve as model of post-disaster reconstruction to the rest of the country and perhaps, the world. Through a Philippine-based online crowdfunding campaign, donors from around the world contributed to the core target of ten (10) randomly scattered Living Ball installations, enabling the Leapfrog Project to reach 100% of its first milestone goal. The installations will symbolize the vision for a future city development where each piece demonstrates resiliency in rebuilding (e.g. bio-mimicry, living skins, etc).

The Living Ball installations—a derivative from the Living Wall project of architect Luis, is intended to light up the city as it begins rebuilding. It’s inspired by the Japanese Marino ball, a rare growth form of the species where the algae grow into large green balls. In collaboration with some professors from the University of the Philippines Marine Science Institute, one installation would explore using a bioluminescent plankton native to the Philippines that likely ‘glow’ when disturbed, allowing for controlled lighting. Another installation would explore the use of photo luminescent paint that produces an 8-hour afterglow requiring only 10 minutes of solar irradiation even on a cloudy day. The paint is made from natural light-storing mineral crystals that are non-radioactive, toxic-free, and can be recharged an infinite number of times.

The ultimate objective of the Leapfrog Project is to transfer the attention received from this unique architecture installation into a fundraising effort to build and replace the ten (10) structures, a template for rebuilding the city of Tacloban. The final structures will be determined and built based on the needs of the selected recipient community. By doing so, we are enabling an effort to leapfrog into innovation for sustainable development that engages different schools of thought in design, science, business, and technology, and at the same time, contributing towards a more caring, charitable, and vitality-enhancing experience and cultivation of a generative space that allows them to flourish in their current and future endeavor.

Images and visuals:
A sketch illustrating the idea behind it: and a video where these structures are represented by tea lights illuminating one by one:

Some architectural renderings during the day and at night: (day) (night) (eye level)


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