A Community Garden Centre designed by AHO – the Oslo School of Architecture and Design

Community Garden

We have been hard at work and now super excited to announce that the local municipality has donated to the project and Beit Atfal Assomoud an amazing plot of land close to the camp for the community garden and that the Oslo School of Architecture and Design has started its Scarcity and Creativity Studio that aims to design and build a workshop cabin for the future garden. More news soon!  

Exhibition and Mapping Workshop

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Here is an article that Firas Ismail wrote for Public Lab about our exhibition and mapping workshop: On 4 -5 February, an exhibition of our balloon mapping project took place in Al Hula Association in Bourj Al Shamali refugee camp. The exhibition was divided into several sections with different themes and information. At the entrance, the exhibition had a small survey for visitors who came to see the exhibition. The…

A talk at M Pavillion

M Pavillion

We are super excited to have been invited to give a talk with Assemble Papers about our mapping project at M Pavillion in Melbourne. We will be connecting by Skype from Lebanon. MPavilion is an event hub, a meeting place, a temporary landmark, a spontaneous detour and a starting point. From October 2016 to February 2017 they are collaborating with thinkers, doers and makers to bring to Melbourne a free four–month program…

Our Work on Al Jazeera English


Palestinians craft first aerial map of refugee camp Using balloons and a camera, Palestinian refugees have been working on a detailed map of Lebanon’s Burj al-Shamali camp.  By Jillian Kestler-D’Amours   Burj al-Shamali refugee camp, Lebanon – Amal Said and Mustapha Dakhloul expertly wind their way through the maze-like streets of Burj al-Shamali, squeezing through the refugee camp’s narrow alleyways past local children playing on the cracked pavement.”This was one of…

Balloon Mapping Guides in Arabic and German


During our stay in Berlin, key in our work was increasing awareness of balloon mapping and our work at Bourj Al Shamali. For this purpose, we are very pleased to have translated Public Lab’s balloon mapping guide into Arabic and German. These are now available under a creative commons license in Public Lab’s webpage. We are very grateful to the Andrea von Braun Foundation who supported our stay in Berlin,…

Many new developments…


We are very pleased that Places Journal has published Claudia’s article on Bourj Al Shamali: “Camp Code: How to navigate a refugee settlement“. We are also full of news and new initiatives… so watch this space as will be updating this website soon!    

A Public Lab Chapter in the camp


We are very pleased to be joining the Public Lab community as a Public Lab chapter. This is our rationale: Background and Problem Refugee camps are transitory solutions that, as they endure, end up becoming informally constructed cities with a strong negative imprint on the local environment. An example of this is Bourj Al Shamali Palestinian refugee camp in south Lebanon. Founded in 1948, it has now taken on the air…

Marianne Potvin, Harvard researcher, visits us


Marianne Potvin, a PhD student at the urban planning department at Harvard University visited Bourj Al Shamali on Wednesday 5 August 2015. Marianne studies the intersection of humanitarianism and urbanism, and her aim for her Harvard-sponsored research in Lebanon was to learn and document how different aid agencies are dealing with the challenges of providing assistance in densely urbanised areas, and how (and if) they are using and developing new tools and…