While collaborating closely with the local community to develop the criteria for the housing and general master plan approach for the Rwinkwavu Village, it became clear to the team that understanding the local construction means and methods would be critical in the success of the project. Guard House 1 was to be the first structure built. It served as an initial prototype, evaluating the feasibility of various construction techniques for future affordable housing applications in the village.
One of the main goals for this project was to experiment with easily replicable earth-based material construction within the village of Rwinkwavu and the surrounding areas. Rammed earth floors were selected as the most practical approach for this project considering the budget and site constraints. An ancient technique that dates back thousands of years, rammed earth floors are an enduring and environmentally friendly flooring approach. The rammed earth floor was composed of four distinct layers with all the required materials locally sourced.
The following is a guideline of the step-by-step process and catalog of materials used to achieve the rammed earth floor in this prototype first building of our master plan for Rwinkwavu.