Earthbag shelter for Nepal

Earthbag shelter for Nepal


I came across this project proposal for Nepal. Very little information is available, although it looks very interesting. I encourage the designer to build a prototype and report the results.

“Earthbag shelter Nepal: Sharing platform for ideas and plans relating to construction of earthbag shelters in Nepal”

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Earthbag Shelter Nepal — 8 Comments

  1. Yes, the extended poles are a great concept and using the green house roofing would also be good water resisting. Also, if the concept were applied to a roundhouse, one would have a 360 degree, protected storage / greenhouse area ajoining the home, allowing light in through the windows. The shape would end up like a large teepee, which might also be a good option in hurricanes being that there would be no flat surfaces for winds to push against …

    • Roundhouses are great, although in this instance (in Nepal) they may not catch on. Nepali’s prefer rectangular designs, plus the government is issuing metal roofing for rebuilding. It’s hard to fit metal roofing on round roofs.

  2. I suggest extending the roof in the front. Add poles, recycled wood or bamboo on top of the two earthbag walls to support the roof framing.

    Another option is to size the width of the interior to match two pallets that can be put in the back for a bed with storage beneath.

  3. In a hot, dry climate, the interior section could be dugout to give a deeper space and draw cooling from the earth, as long as you build above possible flood levels.

    • You got me thinking about the greenhouse idea. Fiberglass greenhouse roofing could be used.
      http://www.fibermesh.org/img/fiberglass-panel-4.jpg

      It takes a long time to rebuild lots of houses. Building shelters might be the most practical solution for many since they’re low cost and quick and easy to build. At least you’d have a roof over your head instead of a tarp or tent.

  4. I like the idea of the roof poles extending all the way to the ground. They create a space that could be used in effect, like a green house (similar to earthships), by using clear corrogated plastic attached between the extended roof poles.

    • Yes, I like this. It’s quite clever. Some of that space could also be used for storage.

      Also note how this design is extremely stable with low walls and roof framing that braces the walls.

      The upper walls could be made with insulating bags of rice hulls, shredded styrofoam hyper-wattle, etc.

  5. Suggestions: Use standard 18″ wide earthbags. That’s all you need. I’ve heard 19″ wide tubing is readily available at carpet supply companies in Nepal. Polypropylene tubing like this will work perfectly. Some builders in Nepal are cutting the tubing and making 4′-5’long custom bags for ease of handling. The added overlap between courses adds extra strength.

    Also, keep bamboo out of the soil or it will quickly rot.

    Shelters like this cam be built very quickly with team effort. Nepal needs many thousands of shelters like this.

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