I’m jumping on Patti’s (over at Liberty Post) bandwagon. I quite agree that these inexpensive, earthquake resistant Styrofoam homes should be a serious consideration for places like Haiti. For that matter, lots of other places. Created by International Dome House Inc. which is based in Japan, these homes boast ultra thermal insulating properties, easy scalability (by adding more modules), fast and easy assembly, lightweight transportation and a starting kit price of only $30,000.
But here is what I like most about these houses. They are obviously no McMansions – these rounded quaint quarters seem to beg for neighborhoods that have front doors facing every which direction, and paths between each. All of it, on a normal human scale, and it would seem to encourage walk-ability in neighborhoods.
I think a lot about the 10 lbs I would like to loose. I have had 2 children and had no issues with loosing the post baby weight — but the sack of potatoes that I carry around…it came from when I moved from London back to America. It is good ‘ole USA fat – and it comes from the fact that my everyday life is so much more sedentary than my London life was. Even if I had lived in the country in England, I would have more reasons to traverse rambling paths to get to my local pub and other neighborly places. But here in the USA we are forced to rely too heavily on cars and our communities are poorly designed and give us NO reasons to walk.
I have been watching Jamie Oliver and his TV show about kids, how terribly they eat, and how poorly educated they are when it comes to vegetables and good food. I admire Jamie for stepping up to the plate for his industry and demanding that we do better, pointing out how his own peers are letting down a population and putting a spotlight on the problems in order to start to make change. But, I have to say, I think we fool ourselves to think that the American obesity epidemic is purely food based. It is also hugely caused by the design of our communities. And for that I think that we in the Architecture, Landscape, Civil, Urban, and Garden design world need to start stepping up and taking responsibility. I am wondering who in our world is going to stand up for all of us, shake things up a bit, and start pointing out that we in the all the land related design industries haven’t been building communities that support a healthy groups of people and we too can do better?