Friday, December 3, 2010

Haiti House

In May I was fortunate to spend a week in Haiti in the town of Ganthier, 15 miles or so east of Port-au-Prince and near the border of Dominican Republic. There was not as much damage from the earthquake here, but there was still evidence of its powerful destructive effect. This stone-built house had several walls demolished, and seemed to be standing more from pride than gravity.
The larger problem in these areas is the influx (or sometimes return) of people from Port-au-Prince and living in camps, some with tents, others just with sheets. My work was to do planning for expanding this town. This will be difficult as 80% of public records for land ownership were destroyed. A perhaps more likely scenario for provision of housing, and especially jobs, might be entirely new towns on land that is clearly owned by the government. This is the hope for a town I designed for 12,000 between Ganthier and Bonnet.

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