When a country has been devastated by an earthquake, how can we help?
When a country has been devastated by an earthquake, how can we help?

Build Change Haiti Reconstruction Effort

By providing prototype designs for safer buildings while keeping the specific construction practices of the region in mind, Forell | Elsesser and Build Change have provided Haitians with viable, buildable solutions for a fresh and safer start.
Customized Solution
  • In partnership with Build Change, Forell | Elsesser provided two of five potential housing structure prototype designs to aid Haitians in their effort to rebuild with stronger, more seismically resilient structures.
  • Taking into account existing construction practices in Haiti, the project team created a 1 to 2-story reinforced masonry house and a multi-story commercial/residential building. The designs accommodated local building standards specific to Haiti like the hand mixing of concrete, the bending of steel by hand, and the cost of concrete as a limitation on its use. Different variations of the designs were developed for different soil conditions, and both structures were designed to allow for the addition of a top floor later, as it is common practice there.
  • The design included a full set of layout plans and details, structural narratives, and construction cost estimates for both building types. These documents will be distributed by Build Change to the Government of Haiti and to Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) working in the country to use as a basis for the preparation of construction drawings.

Unusual Structures

  • Team Lead: Build Change
  • Reinforced masonry and concrete frames with masonry infill