Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Incremental Housing in Haiti

In the midst of all the devastation in Haiti, it is hard to imagine thinking about next steps, when I feel like i haven't even been able to process the initial event. Regardless, in thinking about how to rebuild, many ideas and conversations I have been having come back to the idea of incrementality. I decided to utilize this blog again to see what discussion this may trigger. Also, please check out the good work going on at wired.com. They have a great discussion about issues in Haiti http://haitirewired.wired.com/

It seems that intentionally planning projects to be incomplete, offers many advantages over those that are designed to be built all at once, namely that of time and money. Additionally, because most people in places like Haiti are already building incrementally (pay as you go), this approach offers a more potentially culturally sensitive and contextual approach. Finally, incremental growth may offer the greatest opportunity to shift the large scale redevelopment to one that is more sustainable, inclusive, and weighted more towards the bottom up approach than the top-down. However, as with any project as this scope, the devil is in the details…