This first of its kind community will provide families in Latin America affordable housing that adapts to their day-to-day lives. Families from this community have been involved in the planning process from the start – a unique attribute to New Story’s community planning process. The population is made up of mostly farmers and artisans with ages that range from newborns to the elderly and who often live in multi-generation homes. Working directly with these families; we provided options that responded to their housing needs in ways that extended beyond single traditional home design. Additionally, using 3D technology allowed us to offer solutions to address important questions related to climate, household structure, and the role that the homes play in creating community.
We began by facilitating a series of on-the-ground workshops to understand and adapt plans and designs to the community’s specific motives, habits, and needs. Through this process, we uncovered the necessity to design a system that allows for different programs, adapts to climate factors, and even enables building second floors safely as families grow.
Each lot is 120-square meters, while the interior space of each home is approximately 55 square meters. The design reflects a culture of using outdoor spaces for cooking, food preparation, and eating. The roof overhang over the front and back patios provides added shade from the sun, protection from rainfall, and a space for socializing. The simple addition of front and rear outdoor lighting offers a sense of safety and security for the families.
The design and technology allow the homes to adapt to local environmental conditions such as climate and seismic activity, by incorporating additional reinforcement into the wall cavities and using the walls themselves to resist lateral movement.
Inside the homes, 3D printing uniquely enables built-in elements such as counters in the kitchen and bathroom, seating, shelves, and ledges in the walls, and embedded structural hooks for building closets, storage, and clothes-lines. The technology has also been adapted to a tropical environment with heavy rainfall by utilizing strategically placed windows, door openings, and an open floor plan to encourage natural cross-ventilation.
We’ve created options and areas for customization that families can choose from to help them personalize their homes, feel a sense of ownership, community, and security. The process has been beautifully collaborative and has led to creative solutions for an adaptive design born in partnership with the local community.