Earthbags are Gaining Traction in Kenya

Earthbag construction is gaining traction in Kenya as an alternative to traditional building materials such as wood, iron sheets, or stones. Real estate investors are increasingly embracing this technique. By utilizing earthbags, developers can easily access the necessary resources and construct structures affordably.

Earthbag construction begins by utilizing on-site fill materials, which typically consist of sand, dirt, clay, and gravel. These natural resources serve as the primary building material for the construction process. To form the structure, polypropylene bags are filled.

One of the biggest benefits of constructing earthbag buildings is the ability to create structures of virtually any shape and size. These durable bags are capable of withstanding extreme temperatures and strong winds. These properties set earthbags apart from houses built using materials like wood or iron sheets, giving them a huge advantage over other construction methods.

A sustainable building expert said the technique is gaining traction due to how efficient it is. “So far so good. The results are very promising and this technology has the potential of being a game changer for low housing dreams in Africa if not Kenya.”

With iron sheet houses it is difficult to regulate temperatures. They are too cold at night and too hot during the day. Furthermore, they are also not secure since the walls are easy to break into. Earthbag houses offer very high quality indoor temperatures since the walls are thick and with good thermal mass qualities. Earthbag houses are also very secure from break ins since the walls are rigid and strong, like stone houses.

Earthbags, when properly packed, create a stable and structurally sound wall system. The walls are resistant to seismic activity and natural disasters. Also earthbag construction relies on using locally sourced and sustainable materials. This type of construction minimizes waste and promotes recycling, making it an environmentally friendly construction method.

Earthbags are best suited for small buildings. In fact, getting permits for the construction of houses with earthbags at times poses a challenge and that is why you do not see a lot of them in urban areas.

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