Over Break, Cornell Students Build Sustainable House In Nicaragua

www.sustainablecampus.cornell.edu – By Emma Jesch via the Cornell Daily Sun

Over winter break, Cornell students began building an affordable and environmentally sustainable model house in Nicaragua.

The students, who are part of Cornell University Sustainable Design — an organization that promotes sustainability through design — traveled to Nagarote, Nicaragua to build the house. The house will serve not only as a home for a family, but also as a platform to demonstrate ideal eco-friendly housing initiatives, said Kai Keane ’14, one of the students who led the project.
The house and its landscaping — part of the Sustainable Neighborhoods Nicaragua project — are the product of more than three semesters’ worth of research on designing sustainable and affordable housing for low-income Nicaraguan families, according to Keane. The house is scheduled to be completed around mid-February 2013, according to SNN’s press release.
The project team said it hopes the house can act as a precedent to ameliorate Nicaragua’s housing shortage.

“Nicaragua currently faces a severe housing shortage,” the team’s press release said. “Two out of every three Nicaraguans confront difficulties related to housing.”
As the project team looks to the future, it hopes to eventually broaden the scope of its work, according to Keane.
“We hope that this project can extend much farther than just this one house,” Keane said. “It can be replicated all over and eventually [can be] nationally implemented.”

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