Grain bin homes for Haiti and the U.S.

First of all the credit goes to Owen Geiger and his EarthBag Building Blog for, yet, another great find. Second of all, I like the idea of repurposing grain bins into homes. Third of all, I was thrilled to see that this business, Sukup, is donating these houses to Haitians in Les Cayes, map, and Croix-Des-Bouquets, map, through Haiti Relief Fund, Inc. This video shows a representative excitedly looking over a demo house at the Sukup factory.

This is Sukup's explanation of the house.
Sukup Safe T HomesTM are engineered structures that are suitable for all phases of recovery effort. They are quick and easy to construct, making them ideal for emergency situations. The all-steel construction makes the Sukup Safe T Home perfect for longer-term use, since they are weather-, fire- and termite-proof. They are also movable, making them well suited to transitional shelter needs. The round shape of the Safe T Home allows the unit to withstand high winds. They are also virtually earthquake-proof.
They also put together a video.

Here is a link to some of their pictures in Haiti. They also have more videos on their Youtube page about their construction trip. This one shows a recent trip in which 11 homes were erected in Les Cayes, first by company representatives then by a Haitian crew.


They can fit a dozen homes in a shipping container. Each home costs $5700 USD. But there is a time penalty in shipping to Haiti. Their blog says they have a container that's been held up for 6 months, basically for a ransom.

In the first video, the company rep says these houses could be much wider and/or much taller. I think something better could be done with insulating the walls, maybe an extra layer all the way up. But with the equatorial sun mostly shining on the roof, maybe the walls don't get that hot, and some bamboo around it would help shade it as well. A covered porch would be a great addition to these buildings, much appreciated in the rainy season.

Of course, as someone who likes round houses, I'd like to live in one as well. But I'm really happy that some Haitian families are getting out of tents and into these homes.


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