All of the materials used in this scheme are either found/recycled objects, or can be locally bought. Since Africa is essentially a dumping ground for Europe, Australia, China, and the United States, there are plenty of salvageable materials that can be used from the legal or illegal dumps. These by-products of developed countries become the new natural resource of the 21st century. Tires were a particular interest since there are millions of tires dumped into landfills, which pose a significant tire risk, off-gassing VOC risk, and use up a large amount of landfill space. We deducted that tires have become the new “natural” material, and should be utilized as a building module. Also, we looked at the materials that UNICEF drops off and found that they package things in water bottles, tarp, wooden pallets and cardboard boxes. We decided to use the water bottles for the ceiling, the cardboard for the brick formwork, the pallets to hold up the canned roof, the plastic tarp as waterproofing, and the glass or plastic bottles as a light feature above a tire wall. In addition, we found that there are locally produced rebar in nearby locations, so we decided that using rebar to make a roof structure was plausible. In addition, the shingling of the roof was to be done from any metal material found, whether it is aluminum soda cans or jerry cans usually used for gasoline or water storage. In essence, we wanted to bring down the cost of building this school to virtually nothing through donations of the recycled material or scavenging of them, so the building can become a symbol of a new paradigm of thinking about waste and reuse. The building would become its own self-sufficient unit that cools itself, grows food, and deals with its own waste. We thought this was an important educational tool since neither Chad nor Sudan has a municipal recycling or waste system and are in desperate need to figure out what to do with their trash.
Status: School Project
Location: Chad, Africa
Additional Credits: Sophia Avila