WIT Press

Raw-earth Housing In Antioquia, Colombia


Free (open access)





Page Range

181 - 190



Paper DOI



WIT Press


B. E. Saldarriaga Molina


Taking into account the issues with public housing developments in Colombia and consequently in Antioquia, solutions are intended for applications that open future possibilities for the national context. The Universidad Pontifica Bolivariana (UPB) and the Government of Antioquia promote a research project to develop low cost housing based on two components: rammed earth and reinforced concrete. This paper deals with the raw earth module of that investigation. After evaluating the guidelines for social housing in Antioquia and previous developments carried out, a number of proposals were formulated to solve the accumulated deficit of Antioquia. The suggested solutions take into account the legacy of earth-based construction in Colombia and also analyse international, Latin-American, Colombian precedents in raw earth construction. At the same time the different regions of Antioquia were visited, with the intent to incorporate the local housing models and techniques, their constructive culture, their natural and local resources, and environment. Workshops were held alongside these visits and communities from across the different regions of Antioquia were invited to learn from the different construction methods promoted by the research project. Two construction methods, metal structure bahareque (wattle and daub) and compressed earth blocks (CEB), were used to build housing prototypes as part of the research project. These prototypes serve as a proposal for future housing developments in Antioquia.


housing, raw earth, rammed earth, bahareque, compressed earth bricks, flexibility