Kisumu Polytechnic engineering lecturer designs movable house

A Kisumu Polytechnic lecturer has designed and built a single-storeyed movable house in what is set to be a game-changer in the local housing industry. Samson Alemba said the design will bring a new approach to housing besides reducing the cost of construction. “The house can be dismantled and be assembled with ease, so it reduces the cost of investment in housing every time one moves from one location to another,” said Alemba.

He designed the house with the support of other lecturers in the college’s Department of Engineering and a non-governmental organisation, Arc Kenya. A typical house can be relocated and assembled with a minimum of four people in labour requirement. The house type is built with prefabricated steel, with wooden fringes forming part of the interiors. The steel and fittings are joined together with bolts for ease of dismantling and assembling after relocation.
A standard single-storeyed house will cost up to Sh3.5 million, with prices adjusting upward depending a home buyer wants fitted in the interiors. The design incorporates solar power and the rooms are self-contained with a detachable sewerage system. Alemba said the house type will be most ideal for large scale police housing, construction sites involving huge projects such as roads and mobile clinics. It would also blend well with the Kenyan communities who still practice nomadic pastoralism.

Joyce Nyanjom, the principal of Kisumu Polytechnic, said the institution will market and sell the housing model locally and internationally after it is patented. Alemba said it has taken more than a year to complete the project, including design and construction.

“The only challenge in the house is the need for speed in dismantling and packaging so that the wooden parts do not warp as a result of sun or rain since this might tamper with their fitting lines,” he said. The first attempt on such building technology was mooted in Florida in 1960 as Vagabond Towers but never materialised, though innovators have been able to manufacture and build such houses in recent times.


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Posted on : 30 Nov,-0001

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