Hurricane Replacement Housing from Two Directions

When:  Nov 12, 2018 from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM (ET)

Rescheduled for Monday, November 12

Thanks for your patience! Our speaker was not able to make the original webinar date/time due to delays in airline travel, so we hope you'll be able to join this rescheduled sessions. 


Learn how the commitment to community-driven-design in two housing programs accomplished hundreds of hurricane replacement houses in two very different ways: on the Mississippi Gulf Coast a resident-by-resident design process; and in Houston an up-front community-informed catalogue of house designs.


Earn 1 HSW


Learning objectives:

  1. Understand and describe different ways in which the design process can be driven by community and resident input within the context of hurricane replacement housing programs

  2. Discuss how community-driven design leads to projects that strengthen communities by highlighting the unique aspects of neighborhoods and increasing the commitment that residents have to their own neighborhoods

  3. Describe how the design and development of hurricane replacement houses address environmental and community resilient objectives

  4. Demonstrate the value of design decision making as an effective method of raising the quality of housing and working with non-profit building partners and municipalities

After four years and 300 house projects to rebuild from Hurricane Katrina the Gulf Coast Community Design Studio (GCCDS), joined with Building Community Workshop (BC Workshop), and unabridged Architecture, at the invitation of the City of Houston to create a community driven design program for 250 replacement houses following Hurricane Ike.

The two housing programs demonstrate two very different approaches to community-driven-design. Both programs used HUD Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery funds and both programs worked on scattered sites in multiple neighborhoods. Both programs aimed to push for a high design standard and to enable homeowners as much decision making power as possible. However, the community design approaches of the two programs were very different.

The approach in Mississippi was a fully embedded design process. The GCCDS set up their office in the same work space as their primary house building partner, and placed satellite design staff in several other building partners along the Gulf Coast. The design staff were continuously involved with the residents and housing case managers and the house design process was fully integrated into the overall work of helping low-income families get a house specific to the site and family’s needs and wants.

The City of Houston on the other hand required a housing delivery process using a catalogue of house plans. To accomplish a community driven design process GCCDS, BC Workshop and unabridged Architecture did extensive analysis of lot size and house design types for six targeted Houston neighborhoods. This information was used for multiple community meetings for each neighborhood to produce community-informed design manuals. Ten Houston architectural firms were enlisted to produce designs and community members participated in open house meetings to select preferred designs, which were then developed into construction documents to produce a catalogue of around 20 house plans to be choices for qualified residents.

The AIA webinar will focus on how both programs used design in different ways to engage the community to achieve well-built and well-loved houses. Both programs received AIA recognition, the Mississippi houses received a Gulf States and a Mississippi AIA design awards, and the Houston houses received the 2016 AIA and HUD Secretary Design Award for Community-Informed Design.

David Perkes, AIA

David Perkes is an architect, Professor for Mississippi State University and the founding director of the Gulf Coast Community Design Studio, a professional outreach program that provides resilient planning, landscape and architectural design support to Gulf Coast communities. David received an MED from Yale, MArch from University of Utah, and BS in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Utah State University. In 2004 David was awarded a Loeb Fellowship from the Harvard Graduate School of Design.


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