LEARNING FROM DEBRIS:
Asunción Ixtaltepec, Oaxaca
Betzabe Valdes and Deni Lopez

With the help of Gretchen Brion-Meisels, lecturer in Prevention Science and Practice from the Harvard University Graduate School of Education, and Lorena Bello Gómez, lecturer in Architecture from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, we devised a multistep educational program to promote participatory reconstruction in the municipality of Asunción Ixtaltepec, Oaxaca. In short, our proposal centers on hiring local women (who were already involved in construction waste management) through the combination of preexisting financial aid programs to rebuild a public space with rubble from the 2017 earthquakes, developing skills to reinforce their own houses as part of the second stage of the process. We claim that the success of a program like this could set a positive example for the other neighboring communities, allowing for inclusive design to become a catalyst for a more sustainable long- term recovery.

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RECONSTRUCTION, RECYCLABILITY, AND MEMORY
Asuncion Ixtaltepec, Oaxaca
Carlos Casalduc and Cristina Solis

As part of the Beyond Reconstruction workshop and as a follow up to the Learning from Debris program proposal, this project understands reconstruction as a crucial stage in the urbanization of the risk-prone territory of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, Mexico. It advocates reducing the socio-economic and environmental impact of periodical catastrophes by enhancing heritage and memory, reducing trauma, increasing risk awareness, and enhancing response capacities among local communities. In this disaster-prone isthmus, the proposal provides local women with employment and technical assistance to rebuild a public elementary school using rubble from the earthquakes. By using the vernacular house typology in the school to quickly produce a safe space for children and families during reconstruction, the community learns to rebuild their own houses in a safe way while reusing materials and preserving their heritage and memory. 

Click on the image to view and download the photo gallery.

Click here to view and download the full project description.