Question to Building Inspector: We are looking at moving to rural Livingston Parish, Lousiana and planning on building our own earthbag home within the next year… Any help in this regard would be greatly appreciated.
Building Inspector: I have viewed the website for earthbag building that you mentioned and it is very interesting, however, the entire State is under the Uniform State Building Code and I cannot find anything under the prescriptive provisions of the International Residential Code that would allow this type of construction. You may find an architect/ engineer that would design, engineer, inspect, and sign off on it for occupancy, as an alternate to the building code. You would have to go thru all the permit process as regular construction, which includes plan submittal before construction could begin. If you need further assistance please feel free to contact me.
Comment from PSE Engineering, Inc.: We can help you with the structural engineering design for your sustainable/green earthbag home. Regarding the inspection, a local certified inspector can do it for you. He/she can submit the inspection report to me and I check it and if correct, I will approve it.
The average cost engineering the drawings is about $2,500 based on the area and how complex is the layout. Please note this is an estimate only and it depends on the area and complexity of the building. I look forward to receiving the layout and serving you on this green home. Thank you so much for your business.
Bill Taha, Ph.,D., PE.