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Let’s build ‘stone-like’ houses

12:27 AM December 19, 2015

Again we hear of houses ravaged or damaged by strong winds and rains caused by typhoons. We never learn. Why don’t the concerned government agencies like the Department of Public Works and Highways, the National Housing Authority—in cooperation with organizations like the Philippine Institute of Civil Engineers, United Architects of the Philippines and the Philippine Institute of Architects—produce typical plans or models of low-cost, stone-like structures that could withstand strong winds and rains? And then introduce these models, in cooperation with the local government units, in typhoon-prone areas.

In the Caribbean, where tornadoes are frequent, houses are bungalow-like, but built with walls of thick hollow blocks, and with roofs of “masonry tiles” laid over and attached to thin concrete slab; and these structures have withstood strong winds. Houses in Batanes are built on a similar concept.

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We should go away from wooden or light metal frame trusses and roofing. These are easily blown away by strong winds.

This will save government calamity funds that can then be used for other purposes.

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—ROBERTO M. QUICIO JR., vice president, Phil Iron Construction and Marine Works, Jasaan, Misamis Oriental, [email protected]

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TAGS: building, calamity-proof structures, disasters, housing
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