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HEALTHIER HOMES: Insights from prototyping affordable housing in Tanzania with Hannah Wood and Otis Sloan Brittain

May 5 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm


How can the global demand for low-cost housing be met whilst reducing environmental impact and improving family health? Join project architects Hannah Wood and Otis Sloan Brittain on the ground in Tanzania for an insight into their work in architecture and health research – applying iterative approaches to climatic design including Computational Fluid Dynamics simulation and 1:1 prototyping.

Sub-Saharan Africa will account for the majority of the world’s population growth over the next decades, with the number of people expected to double to 2.5 billion by 2050 (UN, 2019). This will necessitate the construction of over 400 million new homes.

The Star Homes project, developed by an interdisciplinary team of architects, physicians and entomologists, combines robust interventions which we hope will improve family health and well-being. The house design, developed from 10 past prototypes, is adapted for the hot, tropical climate.

Optimising resource use was a key concept guiding the house design. Initial BIM calculations suggest that per m2 the prototype house uses 37% less embodied carbon, 41% less embodied energy and 70% less concrete compared with a typical local concrete block construction. Overall the build cost of house and latrine is between $6000 – $8000 and can be built in under 4 weeks. Passive design strategies ensure there are no operational costs throughout the home’s predicted 30-year lifespan, unlocking time and resources to strengthen rural communities and lift families out of poverty long-term.

The health of families in 110 prototype homes, constructed in 60 villages across the Mtwara region in Tanzania, will be compared with 440 control houses as part of a 3-year randomised control trial, one of the largest ever studies into the effect of housing on family health. The construction of the 110 homes to be used in the trial is currently underway and this phase of the project is predicted to complete later this year

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May 5
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
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