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Video of the week: Low-cost bamboo house takes top prize.

Posted on Nov 30, 2018 3:58:05 PM

Earl Patrick Forlales, a 23-year-old from Manila, has won an RICS prize (pic courtesy of RICS).“This is a huge step forward to helping the people of Manila. The state of housing in the city is at crisis point, and will undoubtedly get worse with this new influx of workers.”

A designer of a low-cost house made of bamboo to tackle the chronic shortage of affordable housing in Manila, Philippines, has won a ‘designing cities for the future’ prize.

Earl Forlales, 23, won this prize from UK-based Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) in its ‘Cities for our Future’ competition that took place earlier this month. The prize money of £50,000 will fund a prototype, as well as actual units.

The house, known as CUBO, uses engineered bamboo, and can be put together in four hours at a cost of £60 per square metre.

The modular housing, which can be manufactured in a week, includes design elements such as a tilted roof that captures rainwater and reduces heat gain, and elevated stilts that prevent floodwaters from entering the home.

“The world’s cities are growing all the time and there is a real need to make sure they are safe, clean and comfortable places to live in,” said John Hughes, competition judge and president of RICS.

He added: “Earl's idea stood out for its simple, yet well thought through solution to the world's growing slum problem.”

Around a third of Manila's 12 million-strong population live in slums, which is possibly the most in any urban area in the world, charities estimate.

Forlales will work with RICS experts and industry professionals to begin work on the project next year, utilising RICS standards and best practice to ensure that it is delivered quickly to change the lives of the population of Manila. Earl has already identified a suitable plot of land to begin construction, with the hope that it will be used in other cities facing similar crises.

Forlales said: “This is a huge step forward to helping the people of Manila. The state of housing in the city is at crisis point, and will undoubtedly get worse with this new influx of workers.”


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Topics: Environment, BBWNVideos

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About the Author

Liz Gyekye
Liz Gyekye
Liz has spent more than ten years working in the waste management and bioenergy sector as a journalist.read more