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Sustainable housing project

In an effort to create job opportunities and to create eco-friendlier construction methods in Lebanon, a major Lebanese bank allocated a large budget for the development of sustainable housing projects for factory workers and their families in the rural areas of Lebanon. The goal was to achieve an efficient, eco-friendly and cost-effective method of construction. Inspired by the Quonset hut temporary structures of the first and second world war, pre-fabricated arch-shaped structural steel ribs and outer walls shape up a modular building typology that takes a few people, a few days to bring up. The DIY aspect of this method means neither labor expertise is required nor heavy equipment. As a result, the placement of these structures can be accurately selected to inflict the smallest amount of damage to the surrounding nature. The arch shape means the structure deflects strong winds and can hold a large amount of snowfall during the heavy Lebanese winters. The insulated pre-assembled double walls and photovoltaic solar panels on the roof are strategies created to reduce the carbon footprint of every housing unit. In summer, the cool air is maintained inside the houses and extra air cooling systems are powered by the solar panels, and vice versa in winter. These various considerations incorporated in the architectural thinking resulted in an efficient low budget building. That way the maximum number of families can be helped and housed while still providing a comfortable, inspiring lifestyle with an uplifting atmosphere.

Henri Asmar

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