The Real Deal Miami

Miami architect designs prefabs that could house Haiti quake victims

January 29, 2010 03:05PM

In the wake of massive destruction from the Jan. 12 earthquake, Haitians in devastated cities and towns need housing, and Miami architect and planner Andrés Duany believes he has a solution. A member of the New Urbanist architectural movement, Duany helped create the prefabricated Katrina Cottage for victims of the 2005 hurricane, and those were widely acclaimed as preferable alternatives to the widely criticized FEMA trailer. Now he has a design he calls a “core house,” a stripped-down, dormitory structure that can sleep eight people and even meets Miami-Dade County’s building codes, making it usable for potential resettled quake refugees in South Florida. The houses are made from a composite material the architect calls miraculous, because of its high strength and light weight. In the short term, though, he just wants to put roofs over quake victims’ heads, he said. [Miami Herald]